Properties vs datatypes vs resources

I have a vocabulary in which am recording information about files
using rdf.  That information is potentially invalidated by any changes
to the files.  Therefore i need a way to authenticate whether the
contents of the file are the same over time.  This will be achieved
using on or more message authentication codes[1] for the files.   For
example, a sha1 and/or sha512 hash of the file.  However, i need this
mechanism to be extensible.

I have considered three different approaches but i am not sure which is best.

 1) have a different property for each type of mac algorithm and have
the codes be literal string values.
 2) define a datatype for each authentication algorithm and have a
single `contentAuthCode` whose domain is typed literals.
 3) have a single `contentAuthCode` property whose domain is an
AuthCode resource.  The algorithm and the code itself would be values
of properties of authentication code resources.

I see option 1 as a little hard to extend because every new mac
algorithm would require a new property.  It is the approach that the
crypto vocabulary[2] in the w3c swap takes.  However, that vocabulary
only supports a couple of algorithms and it does not seem to have been
used very widely, or updated in a long time.

Option 2 seems really elegant but i don't see many vocabularies using
datatypes in this way.  Is that because there are subtle issues with
this approach?

Option 3 is would definitely work but seems a little overly complicated.

I'd love to hear any thoughts you have on these or other approaches to
solving this problem.



Received on Saturday, 26 March 2011 23:21:58 UTC