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Re: Toward easier RDF: a proposal

From: Holger Knublauch <holger@topquadrant.com>
Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2018 09:22:01 +1000
To: Graham Klyne <gk@ninebynine.org>, semantic-web@w3.org
Message-ID: <f84a4e4d-0ff6-c5be-7ff9-755a5386bf7c@topquadrant.com>
On 22/11/2018 10:21 PM, Graham Klyne wrote:

> On 22/11/2018 00:38, Holger Knublauch wrote:
>> Would you mind clarifying this statement a bit? What practical 
>> benefits would
>> the foundation on formal logic add to a future (simplified) RDF, for 
>> average
>> users? I have seen plenty of evidence that some aspects of the semantic
>> technology stack are being regarded as too academic, and that the 
>> role of formal
>> logic has been one driver of this detachment. Related topics are the
>> non-unique-name-assumption and the open world assumption that are 
>> typically
>> neither understood nor expected by average users.
>
> Jumping in, if I may...
>
> My view is that the formal logic underpinning of RDF serves (at least) 
> one important (and not-so-academic) purpose:
>
> Given two distinct RDF graphs that are taken to be descriptions of 
> some world or context, following the procedure of RDF graph merging 
> guarantees that the resulting graph is true of that world exactly when 
> the individual graphs are true of that world.

Sorry, I cannot follow this explanation. What do you mean with a graph 
being true of a world? Could you maybe give a practical example?

>
> To my mind, this underpins the (open-world?) idea of being able to 
> meaningfully combine RDF information from independent sources. 
> (Without implying any guarantee of absolute truth, whatever that may be.)

In my viewpoint, an RDF graph is primarily a data structure - a set of 
triples. Combining RDF triples produces another data structure as the 
union of these triples. That's it. BTW neither SPARQL nor Turtle nor 
many other RDF-based standards require "open world", so this 
interpretation could be made entirely optional.

Holger
Received on Thursday, 22 November 2018 23:22:30 UTC

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