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Proposed response to public comments on primer

From: Miles, Simon <simon.miles@kcl.ac.uk>
Date: Sat, 3 Nov 2012 18:02:39 +0000
To: Provenance Working Group WG <public-prov-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <830EEE5C741ED54EAB28EBACFFC77984EEBA80450D@KCL-MAIL04.kclad.ds.kcl.ac.uk>

There are some public comments to respond to regarding the primer. Specifically, they concern the overview figure, which we have recently updated as discussed elsewhere [1] and the primer's explanation of specialization and alternate, which clearly confused the reviewer.

The draft responses are available on the wiki [2] and are copied below. Feedback is welcome. In particular, the subsection on specialization and alternate has been completely rewritten to try to give a clearer explanation [3], and it would be good to know what the WG thinks.

[1] http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/574
[2] http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/wiki/ResponsesToPublicComments#PROV_Primer_.28Draft.29
[3] http://dvcs.w3.org/hg/prov/raw-file/default/primer/Primer.html#alternate-entities-and-specialization


ISSUE-561 (Primer Section 2 figure)

Original email: http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-prov-comments/2012Jul/0010.html
Tracker: http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/561
Group Response:
 - Since (and partly prompted by) the reviewer comment, the Working Group has discussed the best form for the primer overview diagram.
 - It was decided to change so that the overview image used by primer is no longer to be a copy of the one from the PROV-DM. This is because the intention is different: the primer aims to give just a very few concepts and relations to give an intuition ahead of the rest of the introduction.
 - The figure has been changed to be a reduced version of the one used in the PROV-O specification, and no link between the diagrams in specs is now claimed.
 - For a history of the debates: see http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/574
Changes to the document:
 - Removed the claim in the primer text that the image is the same as the one in PROV-DM.
 - Changed the primer key concepts (overview) image to be one with a reduced set of concepts and relations giving an introductory intuition.
ISSUE-562, ISSUE-563, ISSUE-564 (Specialization and alternates)

Original email: http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-prov-comments/2012Jul/0010.html
Tracker: http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/561, http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/562, http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/563
Group Response
 - In ISSUE-562 and ISSUE-563, the comment is that the primer text implies particular things which the reviewer believes to be untrue, but are actually correct implications.
 - First, it is correct that specialization implies that the child entity inherits all of the attributes of the parent entity. It is the reviewer's counter-example that is an incorrect use of PROV: the "parent" entity of one version of a document is not the prior version of the document, but the document in general, i.e. independent of version. All versions of a document share the attributes of the document in general.
 - Second, the fact that two specializations of a single general entity are alternates of each other is a common case that fits the PROV definition of "alternate", and the implication is again correct.
 - The fact that the reviewer believed the implications to be incorrect suggests that the primer did not adequately explain the concepts.
 - ISSUE-564 relates to the reviewer finding the listed possible uses of the alternate relation confusingly distinct. Again, this is probably due to an inadequate explanation of the alternate and specialization relations.
 - The conclusion of the group is that the previous explanation of the concepts was not adequately clear.
 - Clarifying the meaning of alternate and its relation to specialization: http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-prov-wg/2012Oct/0091.html
Changes to the document:
 - The intuitive introduction to specialization and alternate relations, Section 2.9, has been completely rewritten based around a few use cases each with more detail than present before. Specialization is introduced before alternate, as it more clearly gives the overall motivation for the relations. We believe this gives a clearer indication of what the relations mean, and in what cases they should be used.
 - See http://dvcs.w3.org/hg/prov/raw-file/default/primer/Primer.html#alternate-entities-and-specialization

Dr Simon Miles
Senior Lecturer, Department of Informatics
Kings College London, WC2R 2LS, UK
+44 (0)20 7848 1166

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