W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > semantic-web@w3.org > February 2010

Re: Representing vCard Objects in RDF (W3C Member Submission)

From: Martin Hepp (UniBW) <martin.hepp@ebusiness-unibw.org>
Date: Thu, 11 Feb 2010 10:31:45 +0100
Message-ID: <4B73CE81.5040103@ebusiness-unibw.org>
To: Brian Peterson <publicayers@verizon.net>
CC: 'Harry Halpin' <hhalpin@ibiblio.org>, public-xg-socialweb@w3.org, 'semantic-web at W3C' <semantic-web@w3c.org>, 'Renato Iannella' <renato@nicta.com.au>
Dear Brian, all:

Maybe we should give a bit of context on this new vcard spec:

In mid 2009, Renato, Harry, Peter, and I started a discussion on 
consolidating the representation of contact details for the Web of Data, 
because at that time, there were three variants "on the market":

1. the initial 2001 W3C Note, which was not fully compliant with 2009 
2. the Yahoo vCard spec as part of the SearchMonkey initiative, and
3. the 2006 OWL spec by Harry Halpin, Brian Suda, and Norman Walsh, 
which tried to update the 2001 spec.

A very bad thing was that option #1 was technically the most problematic 
but would be considered most authoritative by developers, because it was 
a W3C Note. It would also show up on top of typical Google queries.

Then, there was a f2f meeting at ESWC 2009 in Crete where we agreed to 
search for a pragmatic, timely solution that would consolidate #2 and #3 
and replace #1, because having ONE standard way of representing typical 
contact data was considered essential for the Semantic Web to grow. This 
required trade-offs, but again: the key issue was to clean up the field 
quickly, because the current state would result in complex query 
variants for even the simplest of tasks.

Still, it took a tremendous amount of effort and much longer than 
expected to reach this consensus.

Most people want to attach contact details directly to entities, while 
vcard was initially about separate contact data entities. The broad 
understanding of what a vcard is (practically: any contact-bearing 
entity) was regarded as a viable compromise between the original spec 
and the Yahoo spec (and typical vcard usage).


Brian Peterson wrote:
> Ok, sure... but why not provide a relation to map between people and their
> vcards? That won't stop people from applying the vcard predicates directly
> on person URIs, but it would make it easier for people to create different
> vcards for people and orgs but still map them back to the person/org.
> Personally I'd prefer dropping the VCard domain assertions on predicates
> like fn. At least then I could use the vcard predicates without having to
> conclude that Fred is a VCard because someone used the v:fn predicate. 
> I'm not sure you lose anything by dropping the VCard domain assertions. And
> if you add something like hasVCard, you let people create vcard resources
> that are linked back to their associated people/orgs.
> Given that people are likely to put the vcard predicates directly on people
> uris, but the vcard ontology is intended to create vcard resources, I'm not
> sure you can avoid the complexity of querying with _and_ without the
> indirection. There's no way to avoid that complication; however, having the
> VCard domain assertions together with the lack of a hasVCard relation, it
> seems to me that the vcard ontology is encouraging this confusion between
> vcards and people/orgs. 
> Brian 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Harry Halpin [mailto:hhalpin@ibiblio.org] 
> Sent: Wednesday, February 10, 2010 6:18 PM
> To: Brian Peterson
> Cc: Renato Iannella; public-xg-socialweb@w3.org; semantic-web at W3C
> Subject: Re: Representing vCard Objects in RDF (W3C Member Submission)
> On Wed, Feb 10, 2010 at 10:55 PM, Brian Peterson
> <publicayers@verizon.net> wrote:
>> I like the updates, but I always wondered why vCard doesn't include a
>> relation that maps a person/org to their vcards. Or does it and I just
> don't
>> see it?
>> I guess I also don't understand the approach outlined in the comments for
>> VCard saying that the VCard URI could also be a URI for a person or
>> organization. What's the point of having the VCard class if anything can
>> have the dual role of being a vcard? I'd have thought that keeping people
>> separate from vcards but providing a way of associating a person's vcards
> to
>> themselves would result in cleaner ontologies.
> Well, there's a difference between "clean" ontologies and what people
> actually do. Peter Mika from Yahoo! could step in with actual data,
> but it appears most people apply hcards and vcard properties to people
> or organizations directly, without an intervening (and often blank
> node) for the "card" itself.
> If someone wants to make a distinction that this particular URI is
> actually a "card" or a "person" they can state that using FOAF.
> Also, it's much easier to query without tooooo many layers of indirection.
>> Brian
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: semantic-web-request@w3.org [mailto:semantic-web-request@w3.org] On
>> Behalf Of Renato Iannella
>> Sent: Tuesday, February 09, 2010 9:45 PM
>> To: public-xg-socialweb@w3.org; semantic-web at W3C
>> Subject: Representing vCard Objects in RDF (W3C Member Submission)
>> We are pleased to announce that an updated W3C Note for "Representing
> vCard
>> Objects in RDF" is now available:
>>  http://www.w3.org/Submission/2010/SUBM-vcard-rdf-20100120
>> This W3C Member Submission merges the original W3C Note [1] with the later
>> "An ontology for vCards" [2] to produce a unified approach to RDF vCard
>> expression.
>> The W3C Team has also produced some comments on the Submission [3].
>> Cheers...  Renato Iannella (for the Authors)
>> [1] http://www.w3.org/TR/2001/NOTE-vcard-rdf-20010222/
>> [2] http://www.w3.org/2006/vcard/ns-2006.html
>> [3] http://www.w3.org/Submission/2010/01/Comment/

martin hepp
e-business & web science research group
universitaet der bundeswehr muenchen

e-mail:  hepp@ebusiness-unibw.org
phone:   +49-(0)89-6004-4217
fax:     +49-(0)89-6004-4620
www:     http://www.unibw.de/ebusiness/ (group)
         http://www.heppnetz.de/ (personal)
skype:   mfhepp 
twitter: mfhepp

Check out GoodRelations for E-Commerce on the Web of Linked Data!

Project page:

Resources for developers:

Overview - http://www.heppnetz.de/projects/goodrelations/webcast/
How-to   - http://vimeo.com/7583816

Recipe for Yahoo SearchMonkey:

Talk at the Semantic Technology Conference 2009: 
"Semantic Web-based E-Commerce: The GoodRelations Ontology"

Overview article on Semantic Universe:

Tutorial materials:
ISWC 2009 Tutorial: The Web of Data for E-Commerce in Brief: A Hands-on Introduction to the GoodRelations Ontology, RDFa, and Yahoo! SearchMonkey 
Received on Thursday, 11 February 2010 09:35:27 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Tuesday, 5 July 2022 08:45:16 UTC