Use machine-readable standardized data formats / Use non-proprietary data formats

Looking at issue-138 and the BPs on Use machine-readable standardized 
data formats and Use non-proprietary data formats - I can't see that 
they need to be separate.

We want to say that things like CSV, XML, RDF and JSON are good and that 
PDF, Excel etc. are bad. It's not that they're not machine readable, 
they are, but they're just much more difficult to process.

Splitting up machine readable standardised and non-proprietary suggests 
we'd need to come up with a proprietary format that's machine readable 
that's OK in one BP and then in the next say that, oh no, hang on, don't 
use that, use this non-proprietary one instead.

And, Microsoft and Adobe have both made their respective formats 
available as ISO standards so we can't refer to formal standards as a 

There's also text in there that I have problems with. The how to test 
section of BP: Use machine-readable standardized data formats  says: 
"Check that the data format conforms to a known machine-readable data 
format specification in current use among anticipated data users."

I believe the point of sharing data on the Web is that the publisher 
shouldn't anticipate what someone else will do with the data.

So... I'd like to propose to merge those two BPs and amend the text to 
talk about the value of open standards in making data available with no 
preconceived ideas of what it might be used for.




Phil Archer
W3C Data Activity Lead
+44 (0)7887 767755

Received on Wednesday, 12 August 2015 12:00:49 UTC