W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > semantic-web@w3.org > January 2007

Re: ConverterFromRdf

From: Dan Brickley <danbri@danbri.org>
Date: Sun, 14 Jan 2007 22:52:18 +0000
Message-ID: <45AAB422.7060505@danbri.org>
To: Danny Ayers <danny.ayers@gmail.com>
Cc: Semantic web list <semantic-web@w3.org>, Brian Suda <brian.suda@gmail.com>

Danny Ayers wrote:
> I've just added a page of this name [1] to the ESW Wiki, would 
> appreciate any pointers. While ConverterToRdf [2] lists tools that are 
> of immediate interest to people working with RDF, conversion the other 
> way may prove equally important to the web.
> A usage example - a social networking service might offer data import 
> from vCard format documents. This could be generated from the data in 
> a FOAF profile via an online service. (Anyone doing that yet? It's 
> available from microformat formatted data, e.g. [3]).
> Like ConvertersToRdf, there are various different 
> mechanisms/strategies available. I've listed the following so far:
> * Direct serialisation (Raptor?)
> * XSLT over RDF/XML
> * SPARQL (one or TwoPhaseSparql)
> * programmatic
> The Semantic Web needn't rely on every system understanding RDF (in 
> fact I'd argue that only a tiny percentage of support is needed to get 
> major gains in net utility). But RDF/XML (and Turtle) serialisations 
> and SPARQL endpoints still demand quite a lot of the system at the 
> other end of the wire. Online extraction/conversion facilities could 
> ease this burden. Without outputs compatible with existing 
> applications, there's a danger of Semantic Web applications looking 
> like black holes.
+1 ... this is a critically important point for the Sem Web community. 
We very easily make the mistake of seeing "legacy" formats as data 
sources for scraping, nothing more. In fact they are text-based 
interfaces to a wealthy of existing, stable, user tested, applications 
which are perfectly capable of consuming "RDF" data, when reformatted 

I made this point in some slides a couple years ago:


- Proprietary/legacy/pre-RDF formats are good things! don't look down on 
them :)
    *we often slip into thinking that exif/ldif/icalendar/vcard/etc are 
useful only as sources of data
    *in fact, they are simple (a few 'print()' statements...) gateways 
that allow RDF data to be used in existing applications
    *deployment model: data flows into RDF from various sources, is 
merged, integrated, etc., queried, and then flows out again
    *...eg. generating icalendar files from exif files, via rdf. or 
running an ldap server from crawled foaf, or a z39.50 server from 
crawled rss.


> [1] http://esw.w3.org/topic/ConverterFromRdf
> [2] http://esw.w3.org/topic/ConverterToRdf
> [3] http://suda.co.uk/projects/X2V/
> -- 
> http://dannyayers.com 
Received on Sunday, 14 January 2007 22:52:34 UTC

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