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Re: [GRAPHS] g-box - abstraction or concrete?

From: Pierre-Antoine Champin <pierre-antoine.champin@liris.cnrs.fr>
Date: Sun, 27 Feb 2011 22:09:16 +0100
Message-ID: <4D6ABD7C.3010503@liris.cnrs.fr>
To: Ivan Herman <ivan@w3.org>
CC: "nathan@webr3.org" <nathan@webr3.org>, public-rdf-wg WG <public-rdf-wg@w3.org>, Sandro Hawke <sandro@w3.org>, Pat Hayes <phayes@ihmc.us>

disclaimer: I'm not sure either to have a perfect understanding of greek 

However, in my understanding, the g-text would rather be the shadow of 
the ideal g-snap. The notion of g-box would be more in the line "you 
never swim twice in the same river": it is a flowing object, something 
whose identity is not defined by its state.

Whether the g-box would be the moving shadow or the moving ideal object, 
I have no strong opinion about. May be we need to name both concepts... 
but I guess we should agree on which one we are talking about.

To rephrase this question in more webby terms, this amounts to decide 
whether the g-box is an informational resource (something 'concrete' 
from a digital point of view, whose state can be directly conveyed by an 
entity), or a non-informational resource (something outside the digital 
realm, whose state is only represented).

To rephrase it again along my previous argument, this amounts to decide 
whether the g-box is a changing g-text, or a changing g-snap.


On 02/27/2011 10:32 AM, Ivan Herman wrote:
> On Feb 25, 2011, at 21:48 , Nathan wrote: [snip]
>> a g-box is a container of statements which form a particular view
>> of a subset of the universe of discourse, the container is stateful
>> such that it (potentially) contains different statements over time,
>> at any one time the statements in the container form a set which
>> can be considered the current state of that container (g-snap) and
>> they form a current view of a the particular subset of the universe
>> of discourse which they describe.
>> A g-box is a stateful abstraction whose state is managed by an
>> abstract protocol, the abstract protocol is realized via various
>> machine protocols which manage the state of the g-box via messages
>> and pass full or partial representations of the current state
>> (g-snap) in various lexical forms (g-texts).
>> A g-box can be given a name, and when a g-box is given a name the
>> name becomes a namespace since the g-box is a container, and this
>> namespace serves as the scope for all things within the g-box
>> (statements/names/nodes). Thus a named-g-box becomes an
>> Aristotelian abstraction where the current state of that
>> named-g-box forms a particular scoped view of subset of the
>> universe of discourse.
>> Since a g-box is an abstraction, it cannot be duplicated or
>> replicated (I'm tempted to say a g-box is a Platonic abstraction
>> and a named g-box is an Aristotelian abstraction), however two
>> g-box's can share the same name(s) and machine protocols can be
>> used to try and synchronize the current state of the g-box's
>> sharing the same name such that they all offer the same view of the
>> subset of the universe of discourse which they describe. This
>> process can be seen as forking a g-box at it's current state to
>> create a new g-box with the same current-state (g-snap), then
>> pulling/pushing changes to the state in order to keep them aligned
>> and sharing the same view / saying the same thing.
>> make sense?
> Hm. That is not exactly the way I understood things although it may
> not be so far off after all... I just try to extrapolate.
> Going back a bit to the root of the discussions, ie, Pat's mail:-):
> he talks about abstract graphs which, in my mind, is the same as
> Sandro's g-snaps. These are mathematical abstractions, ie, sets,
> which never exist in the real world. If you want to go back to the
> Greek world (and I am not ashamed to say that I may be wrong in my
> understanding of the greek philosophers), in my mind a g-snap is an
> ideal, a Platonic abstraction. And a g-text is a textual description
> of a g-snap.
> A g-box is a shadow of a g-snap in Plato's cave allegory; a concrete,
> tangible representation of a g-snap. Well, it is a little bit smarter
> because when poked, it can give you some sort of a representation of
> a g-snap (eg, in the form of a g-text). But no, for me a g-box is not
> an abstraction, it is a real thing somewhere. Because it is a real
> thing, it can have a name, and two g-boxes are different things even
> if they represent the same g-snaps.
> Trying to use the terminology... if I have something like
> {<a>  <b>  <c>  }
> in SPARQL (or n3), what is it? Is it a particular g-text representing
> a g-snap? Probably...
> if I describe a rule (I use N3 syntax here because it is simpler than
> RIF would be, but that is just syntax):
> { ?a<b>  <c>  } =>  {<e>  <f>  ?a }
> what does it mean in our terminology? Both sides describe a pattern
> for a family of g-snaps. Would one say that
> "If a g-box's g-snap matches the rule's left hand side, then extend
> the g-box's g-snap to include the right hand side"?
> (I am sure that I am just driving our logicians up the wall with this
> statement...).
> But then... do I have (do I need?) a syntax saying: "this particular
> g-box's g-snap should be a superset of this particular g-snap"?
> SPARQL has a syntax of the form
> GRAPH<URI>  { graph pattern... }
> but we have to be careful with the analogy with a query language...
> O.k., probably time to stop...
> Ivan
> ---- Ivan Herman, W3C Semantic Web Activity Lead Home:
> http://www.w3.org/People/Ivan/ mobile: +31-641044153 PGP Key:
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Received on Sunday, 27 February 2011 21:09:51 UTC

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