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

Re: Subjects as Literals

From: Hugh Glaser <hg@ecs.soton.ac.uk>
Date: Wed, 30 Jun 2010 21:24:29 +0000
To: Robert Sanderson <azaroth42@gmail.com>
CC: Linked Data community <public-lod@w3.org>, Semantic Web <semantic-web@w3.org>
Message-ID: <EMEW3|ad5f68a8189256d12b022bca0da72935m5YMOd02hg|ecs.soton.ac.uk|C851749D.1572F%hg@ecs.soton.ac.uk>
Good post - gets to my (mis?)understanding of what is the problem.

On 30/06/2010 21:54, "Robert Sanderson" <azaroth42@gmail.com> wrote:

> I have to add my 2 cents here.
>>> However, if you see some specific harm in permitting statements about
>>> literals, please tell us what that harm would be.
> The specific harm that I would see is that statements would be made about
> literals given some particular context of that literal, rather than in a
> global scope.
> For example:
> "London" rdf:type geo:City
This seems strange to me.
I would expect "London" to have a type of string.
> "London" dcterms:isPartOf "England"
Again, this seems strange, especially as dcterms says:
"This term is intended to be used with non-literal values"
I note with interest the plural of values.
> That is true only for the particular London which is the capital of England,
> not London, Texas, London, Ontario or London in Kiribati.
But the string is not the NIR.
> Now the global graph gets very confused when the subjects are merged, and this
> 'London' is in four different countries at once.
But why does the graph have to merge the subjects because they have the same
string value, any more than the objects would be merged if they have the
same string value?

I agree it is a bit strange to have strings as both subject and object, as
the graph is not joined up very much, but it is still a bit of graph that
says something that someone might find interesting.
> The only globally true statements about literals are rather dull:
> "London" numberOfCharacters 6
But is this objection not that same as saying that the only interesting
thing one can say is
6 charactersIn "London" . ?
Or even
numbers:six charactersIn "London" .
Which is similar to
"London" numberOfCharacters numbers:six
> "London" firstCharacter "L"
> For the few use cases where it would be interesting to say something that is
> globally true about a literal, a URI can easily be assigned. Be that a UUID or
> an HTTP URI which returns the literal when dereferenced.
But using literals as objects is also saying things that are true of

> Rob Sanderson
> Los Alamos National Laboratory
Received on Wednesday, 30 June 2010 21:25:12 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Tuesday, 5 July 2022 08:45:18 UTC