W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-linked-json@w3.org > April 2015

Re: GEDCOM to JSON-LD: Request for Feedback

From: Nicholas Bollweg <nick.bollweg@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2015 16:13:07 +0000
Message-ID: <CACejjWzfPDNb0db4+L1n2Ujq0gBiPW7c1WD9=8t4ZBrASuQ79A@mail.gmail.com>
To: Dave Longley <dlongley@digitalbazaar.com>, todd.d.robbins@gmail.com, public-linked-json@w3.org
Here is an interesting middle ground: a json format (apparently without
formal json schema) for the GEDCOMX model:

https
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
://
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
github.com
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
/
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
FamilySearch
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
/
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
gedcomx
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
/blob/master/specifications/
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
json-format-
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>
specification.md
<https://github.com/FamilySearch/gedcomx/blob/master/specifications/json-format-specification.md>

I found a link to an rdf integration page, but it 404ed.

I'm just going out on a limb here to think that GEDCOMX somehow maps to
plain GEDCOM. If that's the case, this is an interesting opportunity to see
how to use  linked data to elevate an existing document model to something
more computable, and be able to validate the round trip with a large corpus
of documents.

As we saw with FHIR, turning an existing spec into linked data massively
might fail due to  some concept too alien to linked data to map cleanly,
but could guide what a future version might provide. Id templates, etc.

As has been discussed, "GEDCOMX-LD" would likely require per-node @context,
as the terms are overloaded... Or thinking about a single GEDCOM source
document as a number of linked data documents, with uri references between
them. Not ideal, but more concise, perhaps.


On 10:04, Thu, Apr 23, 2015 Dave Longley <dlongley@digitalbazaar.com> wrote:

On 04/22/2015 12:36 PM, todd.d.robbins@gmail.com wrote:
> Hello all,
>
> I'm new to the list but would love your feedback on our effort to
> convert and serialize GEDCOM data [1] as JSON-LD. Take a look at our
> research notes and source code here:
>
> https
<https://github.com/earlysaints/database/blob/master/gedcom2jsonld.md>://
<https://github.com/earlysaints/database/blob/master/gedcom2jsonld.md>
github.com
<https://github.com/earlysaints/database/blob/master/gedcom2jsonld.md>/
<https://github.com/earlysaints/database/blob/master/gedcom2jsonld.md>
earlysaints
<https://github.com/earlysaints/database/blob/master/gedcom2jsonld.md>
/database/blob/master/
<https://github.com/earlysaints/database/blob/master/gedcom2jsonld.md>
gedcom2jsonld.md
<https://github.com/earlysaints/database/blob/master/gedcom2jsonld.md>
>
> We're particularly interested in approaches to representing content
> and nested nodes. This is the beginning of our effort, but we wanted
> to get the larger community involved now to get a better sense of the
> challenges other groups have faced when fitting certain data models
> into JSON-LD.

I likely won't have much time to review the document above, but I will
make a recommendation:

Don't keep any allegiance to however the data was previously modeled.
Model it in a proper Linked Data fashion moving forward and create a
tool that can perform whatever mappings are necessary. It's not going to
be worth your time if you just try to take the existing GEDCOM data
model and port it to JSON-LD. I think that would be a mistake because:

1. I don't know what's to gain by keeping it, a simpler converter tool?
You have to write a tool anyway, so focus on creating good output, not
the complexity of the tool. If you need to, in the interim, write a tool
that converts back to GEDCOM for legacy applications.

2. It will inhibit your ability to move quickly.

3. It may result in something unnatural to people familiar with Linked
Data -- and make them shy away from it.

4. You have a one time opportunity to make improvements and fix data
modeling issues from the past. It's not like you're taking legacy JSON
and just adding an LD layer -- you're switching the format entirely.

5. The more natural it feels as Linked Data, and the more you reuse
existing vocabularies (eg: schema.org) where appropriate, the more
adoption you'll see -- and the more innovation on top of it! This can be
exciting change that opens many doors to accessing and improving
genealogical data, or it can be "GEDCOM as JSON-LD".

I recommend you talk to 23andme and see if they'd be interested in a new
JSON-LD format for genealogical data, and what it might mean for Linked
Data (or Big Data) on the Web and their research.

--
Dave Longley
CTO
Digital Bazaar, Inc.
http:// <http://digitalbazaar.com>digitalbazaar.com
Received on Thursday, 23 April 2015 16:13:35 UTC

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