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Re: ISSUE-160: Allowing collections in semantic relationships

From: Thomas Baker <baker@sub.uni-goettingen.de>
Date: Tue, 16 Dec 2008 12:14:42 +0100
To: Dupriez Christophe <christophe_dupriez@yahoo.fr>
Cc: Aida Slavic <aida@acorweb.net>, Antoine Isaac <aisaac@few.vu.nl>, "public-swd-wg@w3.org" <public-swd-wg@w3.org>, "public-esw-thes@w3.org" <public-esw-thes@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20081216111442.GA3988@octavius>

Hi Christophe,

On Tue, Dec 16, 2008 at 09:59:56AM +0000, Dupriez Christophe wrote:
> MARC is very complex, OK. Dublin Core has provided a lowest
> common denominator for exchanges between human users. But
> Dublin Core has forgotten many of MARC qualities (semantical
> precision for instance) and has not really benefitted from
> the knowledge of MARC pitfalls (semantical adequation of
> data for foreseen real purposes). Dublin Core is correct for
> "information discovery" but is now used for "information
> management" which is a painful problem.

I wanted to point out that "Dublin Core" is more than a set
of fifteen elements used with string values (a usage which
is now referred to as "Simple Dublin Core").

The fifteen elements are part of a larger vocabulary "DCMI
Metadata Terms" [1] which, as RDF properties and classes,
are just as extensible as properties and classes in SKOS.
A "Dublin Core application profile" [2] uses properties
from RDF vocabularies, as needed, to address specific real
purposes.  Most of the properties in DCMI Metadata Terms also
have formally defined ranges -- more for purposes of machine
processing than for exchanges between human users.

There is an interesting parallel between the design trade-offs
described by Antoine with respect to the specificity or generic
nature of SKOS and the specificity of the RDF vocabularies
defined around the fifteen-element Dublin Core.  I do not
believe there is a "perfect" balance between simplicity and
complexity; rather, the solution lies in providing mechanisms
for principled extensibility.

I'm not sure if this addresses your point about "semantical
adequation of data", but the extensibility of the
vocabularies plus the notion of mixed-vocabulary profiles
means that profiles can be designed to be as complex or
management-oriented as needed.

Tom (who also works with DCMI)

[1] http://dublincore.org/documents/dcmi-terms/ (see also
    http://yoyodesign.org/doc/dcmi/dcmi-terms/ in French)
[2] http://dublincore.org/documents/2008/01/14/singapore-framework/

Tom Baker <tbaker@tbaker.de>
Received on Tuesday, 16 December 2008 11:15:32 UTC

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