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Re: PROV-ISSUE-46 (where-is-D-in-provenance): Where do I find document D in provenance [Accessing and Querying Provenance]

From: Graham Klyne <GK@ninebynine.org>
Date: Thu, 28 Jul 2011 11:26:34 +0100
Message-ID: <4E31395A.2000700@ninebynine.org>
To: Provenance Working Group WG <public-prov-wg@w3.org>
I've added a scenario analysis appendix to the PAQ document at 

The short answer to this issue is that I believe there are some matters that are 
  beyond the scope of a W3C specification document.  The mechanisms described 
(or with placeholders for fuller description) could form the basis for 
applications that need to deal with, say, data provided on a USB drive, but a 
complete specification would IMO be inappropriate.

S: this scenario effectively calls for this: given an arbitrary data resource, 
implement a general purpose application to discover, retrieve and analyze 
provenance about that resource. At the present time, this is a matter for 
experimental development, which could be based substantially on the mechanisms 
described for provenance discovery and access via third party services.

One thing I did identify as a recurring theme is the possibility of a framework 
to package arbitrary original content with provenance data and/or links.  But 
even here, I'm not convinced that this group has the necessary expertise and/or 
reach to create a viable specification.

Given the extent of work already performed in this field, it seems to me that 
rather than recommending a particular approach at this stage, we would do better 
to catalogue some available solutions and see which ones (if any) that 
implementers choose to run with. In any case, it seems that a specification that 
is specific for provenance to the exclusion of other metadata is unlikely to 
obtain traction, as provenance is just part of a wider landscape of information 
quality, trust, preservation and more.

In summary, I think we need to be careful here to not exceed the useful scope of 
our work.

The specific point raised about "where do I find a BOB assertion" is, I think, a 
matter for the model.  If one has located and obtained the provenance associated 
with a web resource, it's not the job of the access mechanism to figure out what 
it actually describes.  Personally, I think the whole sideshow about BOBs and 
suchlike is just a big unnecessary distraction, but the point about being clear 
about what is described by provenance remains important.


Provenance Working Group Issue Tracker wrote:
> PROV-ISSUE-46 (where-is-D-in-provenance): Where do I find document D in provenance [Accessing and Querying Provenance]
> http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/46
> Raised by: Luc Moreau
> On product: Accessing and Querying Provenance
> I don't understand how the proposal allows us to address http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/wiki/ProvenanceAccessScenario.
> Specifically, I consider a document (cf concrete example) obtained by USB stick (no in band metadata).  
> Using 3.2, I can find a <link/> element in the html header. This gives me a provenance-uri.
> I can download the provenance using an HTTP GET.
> I obtain a set of assertions.  Where do I find the document in this set? More precisely, where do I find a BOB assertion representing the document?  
> I believe I need an identifier, which should have also been passed in the html document: BOB-Identifier.
Received on Thursday, 28 July 2011 10:28:00 UTC

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