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RE: 5.20, need for synonyms

From: Jim Hendler <hendler@cs.umd.edu>
Date: Wed, 31 Jul 2002 14:12:41 -0400
Message-Id: <p0511171fb96dd7ee8ad0@[10.0.1.4]>
To: "Smith, Michael K" <michael.smith@eds.com>, Jeremy Carroll <jjc@hplb.hpl.hp.com>, "Peter F. Patel-Schneider" <pfps@research.bell-labs.com>
Cc: jonathan@openhealth.org, www-webont-wg@w3.org

At 12:46 PM -0500 7/31/02, Smith, Michael K wrote:
>Just thought I would add my 2 cents for the record.
>
>It has taken me a long time, but I have finally figured out that if you want
>to sell something to someone, you make it easy for them to buy.
>
>We want to sell OWL to the world.  If our readers pick up the OWL documents
>and the first thing they see are multiple owl:, rdf:, and rdfs: prefixes,
>they are likely to think they need to understand 3 things in order to
>understand OWL.  That raises the bar unneccessarily.
>
>Of course, tools can mitigate this, but the first thing people are going to
>see are our documents.
>
>I'm not passionate about this.  For me, a symbol is a symbol.  But by the
>same reasoning, substituting for equals shouldn't make our job any harder.
>The issue of interpretation by RDF tools does not seem to me to be hugely
>significant.  I confess I am not familiar with the tool landscape, but
>modifying these systems (the thinest end of the web ontology adoption wave)
>seems trivial.  If the implementors choose not to do so, then they won't be
>able to extract useful RDF information from OWL KBs.  So be it.
>
>- Mike
>
>Michael K. Smith, Ph.D., P.E.
>EDS - Austin Innovation Centre
>98 San Jacinto, #500
>Austin, TX  78701
>
>* phone: +01-512-404-6683
>* mailto:michael.smith@eds.com
>www.eds.com
>

Mike - The other day I went to talk at NASA HQ and met with a bunch 
of folks already using RDF and RDFS.  They had the other perception - 
they thought this meant OWL would mean they had to rewrite all their 
existing stuff for owl tools (until I explained those "sameXXXas" 
statements).  I don't mean for that to be an opinion -- but rather to 
stress that whatever we do we will end up confusing someone - our 
best hope is to make sure our walkthru documents emphasize and 
exemplify whichever the preferred approach is and explain it 
carefully.
-- 
Professor James Hendler				  hendler@cs.umd.edu
Director, Semantic Web and Agent Technologies	  301-405-2696
Maryland Information and Network Dynamics Lab.	  301-405-6707 (Fax)
Univ of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742	  240-731-3822 (Cell)
http://www.cs.umd.edu/users/hendler
Received on Wednesday, 31 July 2002 14:26:26 GMT

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