keeping issue-12 simple

As we have been (re) considering a wide range of possible ways to handle language tags, I would like to reiterate how simple the earlier proposals which Richard outlined is. Allow me to rephrase it in alternative language which might emphasize its harmlessness.

1. We retain the current surface syntax for plain literals with and without language tags. Nothing in RDF/XML or TURTLE or N-triples or any other actually used syntax for RDF changes in any way.

2. Every literal has a type, which is a class name for the class of possible values of all literals with that type. The type of a datatyped literal is the datatype. Plain literals without language tags are considered to have the type xsd:string (as SPARQL currently assumes). Plain literals with language tags are considered to have a new type rdf:LangTaggedString (or something shorter, to be decided. I will use rdf:LTS for brevity). rdf:LTS is not, strictly speaking, a datatype, since its 'lexical space' is <string, tag> pairs rather than strings. but it is remarkably similar to a datatype and nothing would break if you were to consider it a datatype, with the lexical space of strings formed as <string>@tag and the L2V mapping L2V("sss"@ttt) = <sss, ttt>

3. rdf:PlainLiteral is the superclass of xsd:string and rdf:LTS. 

4. The only change to the current specs is to distinguish 'type' from 'datatype' and for clarity, maybe, change the terminology of 'typed literal' to 'datatyped literal'. But even that is not really necessary. All of this hassle comes from  our insisting that the syntax "foo"@baz must be a string paired with a tag, ie two syntactic items rather than one. If we simply say that it represents the string "foo@baz", which encodes a string and a tag and is to be used in a special way determined by the datatype rdf:LTS, a way that follows the existing rdf:PlainLIteral but is restricted to the tagged case,  then every type is a datatype and everything works smoothly, and we can stop discussing this INCREDIBLY TRIVIAL matter and move on to more important things. Ahem, sorry about the slight loss of control  there.


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Received on Wednesday, 1 June 2011 14:45:54 UTC