Re: Interpretation of RDF reification

* Seth Ladd <> [2006-03-23 10:14-1000]
> Thanks for the very informative post, Dan.
> > My preference is simply to never use the W3C RDF reification vocab, and
> > to
> > use other mechanisms for keeping track of 'who said what'....
> Do you have any pointers to what some of these other mechanisms might
> be?  I can think of N3's ability to quote a graph, though I'm not sure
> if that's a formal construct.

For most of what I care about, provenance tracking is a task for a 
database / directory / search engine. So I find the facilities in
SPARQL let me get a lot done. When it comes to claims about "who said
what" being published in the public Web, I find the simple approach of
making claims about the RDF/XML document that encodes the statement to 
be rather handy. You can for eg. use Dublin Core to describe the basic document
metadata, FOAF to describe it's author, or more experimental stuff
(eg. see Edd's writeup at to 
talk about digital signatures etc. <rdf:Description rdf:about=""
etc:etc="..."/> and so forth. And to put one graph *safely* inside another,
although I've not tried it myself, instead of RDF's reification vocab, 
I'd rather use quoting of the XML (either as an XML Literal or if really 
paranoid, entity escaped). It should also be possible to have a 
fixed up reification vocabulary, but dealing properly with bnodes, 
and other subtleties of quoting, would involve a bit of work.

It's also worth keeping an eye on the W3C Rule Interchange Format 
Working Group, see ->

They have a use cases and requirements draft out (which I've only
just noticed by accident, but which appears to be dated today!),

A rule language could be rich enough to handle quoting more robustly
than RDF reification. But I wouldn't bet on it :) I'd be interested to 
hear from WG members on this point.




Received on Friday, 24 March 2006 02:59:24 UTC