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Re: Can we afford to offer SPARQL endpoints when we are successful? (Was "linked data hosted somewhere")

From: Richard Cyganiak <richard@cyganiak.de>
Date: Thu, 27 Nov 2008 12:12:45 +0000
Cc: Aldo Bucchi <aldo.bucchi@gmail.com>, "public-lod@w3.org" <public-lod@w3.org>
Message-Id: <D0672C89-AD58-4875-8415-263B2DC5CFC2@cyganiak.de>
To: Hugh Glaser <hg@ecs.soton.ac.uk>


Here's what I think we will see in the area of RDF publishing in a few  

- few public SPARQL endpoints over popular datasets (for obvious  

- linked data sites offer limited query capabilities (e.g. a  
scientific bibliography site could offer “search paper by title”,  
“search author by name”, “search paper by category and/or date range”)  
(think the “advanced search” form on a website, clad into a REST-style  
API that returns RDF)

- those query capabilities are described in RDF and hence can be  
invoked by tools such as SQUIN/SemWebClient to answer certain queries  

- everyone who wants more advanced query capabilities, will crawl the  
site and run their own local SPARQL store

At the moment we don't have the technology for describing non-SPARQL  
query interfaces in RDF, and crawling linked data is still a fairly  
complex business. As long as these problems are not solved, we pretty  
much are stuck with SPARQL endpoints.


On 27 Nov 2008, at 00:18, Hugh Glaser wrote:

> Prompted by the thread on "linked data hosted somewhere" I would  
> like to ask
> the above question that has been bothering me for a while.
> The only reason anyone can afford to offer a SPARQL endpoint is  
> because it
> doesn't get used too much?
> As abstract components for studying interaction, performance, etc.:
> In fact, I often consider the components themselves interchangeable;  
> that
> is, the first step of the migration to SW technologies for an  
> application is
> to take an SQL-based back end and simply replace it with a SPARQL/ 
> RDF back
> end and then carry on.
> However.
> No serious DB publisher gives direct SQL access to their DB (I think).
> There are often commercial reasons, of course.
> But even when there are not (the Open in LOD), there are only search  
> options
> and possibly download facilities.
> Even government organisations that have a remit to publish their  
> data don't
> offer SQL access.
> Will we not have to do the same?
> Or perhaps there is a subset of SPARQL that I could offer that will  
> allow me
> to offer a "safer" service that conforms to other's safer service  
> (so it is
> well-understood?
> Is this defined, or is anyone working on it?
> And I am not referring to any particular software - it seems to me  
> that this
> is something that LODers need to worry about.
> We aim to take over the world; and if SPARQL endpoints are part of  
> that
> (maybe they aren't - just resolvable URIs?), then we should make  
> damn sure
> that we think they can be delivered.
> My answer to my subject question?
> No, not as it stands. And we need to have a story to replace it.
> Best
> Hugh
> =======================
> Sorry if this is a second copy, but the first, sent as a new post,  
> seemed to
> only elicit a message from <list-help@frink.w3.org> and I can't work  
> out or
> find out whether it means the message was rejected or something  
> else, such
> as awaiting moderation.
> So I've done this as a reply.
> =======================
> And now a response to the message from Aldo, done here to reduce  
> traffic:
> Very generous of you to write in this way.
> And yes, humour is good.
> And sorry to all for the traffic.
> On 27/11/2008 00:02, "Aldo Bucchi" <aldo.bucchi@gmail.com> wrote:
>> OK Hugh,
>> I see what you mean and I understand you being upset. Just re-read  
>> the
>> conversation word by word because I felt something was not right.
>> I did say "wacky"... is that it?
>> In that case, and if this caused the confusion, I am really sorry.
>> I was not talking about your software, this was just a joke.  
>> Talking in
>> general.
>> You replied to my joke with an absurd reply.
>> My point was simply that, if you want to push things over the edge,
>> why not get your own box. We all take care of our infrastructure and
>> know its limitations.
>> So, I formally apologize.
>> I am by no means endorsing one piece of software over another ( save
>> for mine, but it does't exist yet ;).
>> My preferences for virtuoso come from experiential bias.
>> I hope this clears things up.
>> I apologize for the traffic.
>> However, I do make a formal request for some sense of humor.
>> This list tends to get into this kind of discussions, and we will
>> start getting more and more visits from outsiders who are not used to
>> this sort of "sharpness".
>> Best,
>> A
Received on Thursday, 27 November 2008 12:13:29 UTC

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