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RE: Question on Handling of Ill-formed Shapes Graphs

From: Svensson, Lars <L.Svensson@dnb.de>
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 2017 06:59:25 +0000
To: Holger Knublauch <holger@topquadrant.com>, "public-rdf-shapes@w3.org" <public-rdf-shapes@w3.org>
Message-ID: <24637769D123E644A105A0AF0E1F92EF010D2BE9EC@dnbf-ex1.AD.DDB.DE>
On Tuesday, February 21, 2017 2:24 AM, Holger Knublauch [mailto:holger@topquadrant.com] wrote:

> I have raised https://www.w3.org/2014/data-shapes/track/issues/233 to
> discuss this in the WG.

OK, thanks!

/Lars
 
> 
> On 20/02/2017 20:32, Svensson, Lars wrote:
> > Holger,
> >
> > On Sunday, February 19, 2017 11:58 PM, Holger Knublauch
> [mailto:holger@topquadrant.com] wrote:
> >> On 18/02/2017 0:58, Svensson, Lars wrote:
> >>> Hello Holger,
> >>>
> >>> Apologies if I stirred up a hornet's nest... I thought it would be fairly
> uncontentious.
> >>>
> >>> On Thursday, February 16, 2017 10:55 PM, Holger Knublauch
> >> [mailto:holger@topquadrant.com] wrote:
> >>>> there are two major reasons for the current wording, basically due to
> >>>> the complexity of the many syntax rules:
> >>>>
> >>>> 1) If we were to make it a MUST then each SHACL implementation would
> >>>> have to implement all the syntax rules, and we as the WG would need to
> >>>> define test cases for all kinds of invalid structures. The SHOULD lowers
> >>>> the barrier of entry and the formal process issues significantly.
> >>> I don't quite grasp this. The way I read your explanation, it would mean that a
> >> SHACL implementation is not required to implement all the syntax rules. That is a
> >> contradiction to the conformance criteria [1] for "SHACL Core processors as
> >> processors that support validation with the SHACL Core Language" which in my
> reading
> >> means that a conformant SHACL Core processor MUST support all syntactic rules in
> the
> >> SHACL Core Language (and similarly a conformant SHACL-SPARQL processor MUST
> >> support all syntactic rules in the SHACL-SPARQL Language).
> >>
> >> That's not how I would read the conformance section. SHACL Core is
> >> explicitly not required (via MUST) to do syntax checking - so compliant
> >> processors merely MUST support validation following these rules.
> > Right, but implementations are required to _support_ all syntax rules. My remark
> was not targeted at the spec but at your comment, where you say "If we were to
> make it a MUST then each SHACL implementation would have to implement all the
> syntax rules" and I think we all agree that a conforming implementation MUST
> implement and understand all syntax rules even if its behaviour in case of an ill-formed
> shape is not specified.
> >
> >>> To me Peter's suggestion to split between SHACL Core and SHACL-SPARQL syntax
> >> checking sounds sound at the _conceptual_ level. I do understand the point though,
> >> that it lowers the barrier of entry at the _technical_ level and particularly the
> formal
> >> process.
> >>>> 2) It would require validation (for well-formedness) of the shapes graph
> >>>> and this is a very expensive operation. In many scenarios such as
> >>>> interactive data entry tools, the shapes graph is identical to the data
> >>>> graph (or at least is part of the imports closure). If you make an edit,
> >>>> then the shapes may become invalid. This means that a validator would
> >>>> have to perform checking of the shapes before each validation, and this
> >>>> is prohibitively expensive in cases like form validation in real time,
> >>>> for each instance.
> >>> Thank you, this is the kind of case I was looking for.
> >>>
> >>> What worries me with the current text is that a user could be made believe that
> if
> >> the result of a SHACL validation process is undefined when the shapes graph is ill-
> >> formed the processor could in fact return sh:conforms true. One solution could be
> to
> >> add the requirement that if a SHACL processor does not produce a failure in the
> case
> >> of an ill-formed graph, it MUST NOT produce a result with the value sh:conforms
> true.
> >> (I. e. the default result of such an processor must be sh:conforms false).
> >>
> >> The Shapes WG has not defined an API for SHACL. This is significant,
> >> because it does not prescribe a programmatic interface for applications.
> >> Each implementation will offer its own interfaces and different
> >> parameters. I expect that implementations will offer flags to indicate
> >> what levels of features should be activated. In TopBraid's engine, we
> >> have a "flag" (via a SHShape filter) that activates or deactivates
> >> checking of the shapes themselves.
> > OK, that makes sense.
> >
> >> As a result of this, the caller of the API already knows whether it will
> >> perform shapes validation or not. Therefore I don't see why we would
> >> need to explicitly report this back.
> > OK.
> >
> >> Overall I believe the usual workflow will be that people develop their
> >> shapes and use a meta validator until the shapes graph is valid. Only
> >> then they put it into practice, with a set of shapes that are already
> >> tested for correctness. There is no need to test this over and over again.
> > The question is what happens if a processor downloads an ill-formed shape from a
> third party website as part of the processing. I'm talking about the following data flow:
> >
> > 1) User Agent requests an RDF graph from a server
> > 2) Server returns the requested graph and claims that the graph conforms to a
> specific shape (e. g by referencing the shape in the RDF graph or through an http
> header or whatever). The shapes graph can reside on a third party website
> > 3) The UA requests the shapes graph from the (third-party) server
> > 4) The server returns the shapes graph
> > 5) The UA validates (or delegates the validation of) the data graph against the
> shapes graph.
> >
> > In this case, the UA (nor the user it proxies for) cannot know beforehand if the
> shapes graph is well-formed or not. I don't think that this is a corner case but that in
> will be very common.
> >
> > But yes, in those cases I guess that the UA will _always_ perform validation. Or
> (probably more performant) validate the shapes graph the first time and then only
> when it detects that the shapes graph has changed.
> >
> > That said, I still propose to add the requirement that if a SHACL processor does not
> produce a failure in the case of an ill-formed graph, it MUST NOT produce a result with
> the value sh:conforms true. (I. e. the default result of such an processor must be
> sh:conforms false). That would make the whole system more robust.
> >
> > Best,
> >
> > Lars

Received on Tuesday, 21 February 2017 07:00:18 UTC

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