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Re: Normative vs Informative

From: Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com>
Date: Mon, 28 Nov 2011 12:17:59 -0500
Message-ID: <4ED3C247.3060401@openlinksw.com>
To: public-xg-webid@w3.org
On 11/28/11 11:35 AM, Henry Story wrote:
> Dominik is referring to the discussion in Berlin documented on the wiki
>   http://www.w3.org/2005/Incubator/webid/wiki/Berlin_meetup_2011
> especially the first photo of a diagram drawn up by Dan Brickley showing the complexity chart  of WebID. It is potentially explosive if we don't limit ourselves.

You are using "limit" when you mean "focus". I don't have any issues 
with "focus" and I absolutely have no issue with "deceptively simple" 
re. WebID or anything else, you know that.

What I'll always have a problem with is this: misuse (be it inadvertent 
or deliberate) of the above where the end result is picking winners in 
syntax wars.

> We know we can grow to accept the full potential. We need to be a bit more than just one format - because then we can't tell the semantic story so well, and we want to prepare people for the fact that we are inclusive.

You can tell a story about Semantics without Syntax specificity. This is 
basically my point. The concepts behind WebID are more important than 
any directed graph representation syntax. People don't need a specific 
syntax to understand WebID. People implement what they understand using 
tools that work best for their particular circumstances. Thus, an 
implementation details oriented section for WebID should specifically 
state: "here are examples of how this could be implemented," without 
necessarily being resistant to other contributions that use alternative 

>   But at the same time we can't start with everything either, because we would be like fools drowning under our own self imposed workload.

See my comments above. You can effectively crowd source the 
implementation aspect of the WebID spec if its done via Wiki and 
tolerant of alternative syntaxes. That's how it should work if we are 
holding true to the principles of the WWW.

>   So we decided there to keep things simple enough.

In a very subjective way even though.

>   There was pretty good support of that there, and I think that support remains here.

Not for RDF specificity and rejection of all other options by placing 
them in the "heretic box".

Make time to digest the thinking outlined here: 
http://sliwww.slideshare.net/kidehen/iss-1, this is a nice presentation 
that covers this thorny issue of semantics and syntax.

People should be allowed to comprehend what WebID and the WebID protocol 
are about without any Syntax oriented distractions. That's how to best 
engage a broad audience of evangelists, developers, and end-users. 
People can be political about RDF but far less so about the important 
issue of verifiable identity and privacy at InterWeb scales.

> Henry
> On 28 Nov 2011, at 13:48, Dominik Tomaszuk wrote:
>> On 28.11.2011 00:00, Kingsley Idehen wrote:
>>> On 11/27/11 6:46 AM, Dominik Tomaszuk wrote:
>>>> On 27.11.2011 03:14, Henry Story wrote:
>>>>> Great idea. Let's start with a wiki.
>>>>> Open one page: Formats, and have it point to an example page in every
>>>>> other format
>>>>> you can think of - so that each format can get the attention it
>>>>> deserves.
>>>>> Here I wrote up the initial page:
>>>>> http://www.w3.org/2005/Incubator/webid/wiki/Formats
>>>> OK, but first I think we should discuss in mail list. For example I
>>>> disagree that json-ld is important now to WebID. I'm very big fun of
>>>> JSON-LD, but now it's community draft and we have RDF/JSON draft [1]
>>>> from RDF WG.
>>> The issue isn't about JSON-LD or RDF/JSON etc.. WebID shouldn't be about
>>> Syntax. Leave syntax to the implementation details bucket. The concepts
>>> behind WebID has zilch to do with syntax.
>> I don't know what's the point... I've just create wiki pages with examples how WebID profile can look like.
>> We talk about this many times in Berlin, in private mails, teleconf. and IMO there is consensus: WebID must be simple and core of WebID should support minimum of standards, ontologies, URI schemes, formats, protocols etc.
>> Of course we have a lot of possible serialization, but only two of them should be supported in spec. There is only questions:
>> 1) Which of then should be supported via normative section?
>> 2) Which of then should be supported via innormative section?
>> 3) Which of then shouldn't have reference in spec?
>> I disagree that WebID shouldn't show any examples of syntax, because it should be simple. Simple isn't mean that you link and say: "read and analyze:
>> 1) RDF Concepts and Abstract Syntax spec
>> 2) RDF Semantics spec
>> 3) RDF Schema spec
>> 4) FOAF spec
>> 5) Cert ont
>> 6) RDF/XML spec
>> 7) Turtle spec
>> 8) etc
>> and then you know how the syntax should be written".
>> "Simple" for me means to see some examples that I can copy/paste change some small things and it should works. Do not scary people Semantic Web standards.
>> I do not want add to spec (in normative section) all of serialization possibles! This wiki is only starting point of discussion. Additionally, this examples may be useful for implementations. That's all.
>> Best regards,
>> Dominik 'domel' Tomaszuk
> Social Web Architect
> http://bblfish.net/



Kingsley Idehen	
Founder&  CEO
OpenLink Software
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Received on Monday, 28 November 2011 17:18:31 UTC

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