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Re: "Language-tagged strings Re: Toward easier RDF: a proposal"

From: Andy Seaborne <andy@seaborne.org>
Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2018 11:48:47 +0000
To: semantic-web@w3.org
Message-ID: <4179992b-27c8-71eb-558a-05a4e8009a2f@seaborne.org>
The RDF 1.1 WG did spend some time of this - both on putting the langtag 
into the lexical space and putting the lang tag into the datatype.  Both 
are not so easy; in the end the rdf@langString at least meant all 
literals had a datatype.

With the lexical form is a pair (string, lang) and squeezing that into a 
single string, it gets a bit unintuitive when strlen("hello@en") is 8, 
not 5. SeeAlso rdf:plainLiteral.

For datatypes, language tags have their own structure and hierarchy 
(lang-script-region-...) for their requirements which does not really 
fit with datatype subtyping very well.

I don't think changes would simplify.

We have what we have and people have been explaining to the wider 
community (i.e. it's not just people on this list affected). So 
"technically better" isn't the criterion, it should be "unlocks 
potential that is currently, provably blocked".

     Andy

On 23/11/2018 08:42, Wouter Beek wrote:
> Dear David, others,
> 
> As another attempt at simplifying RDF, would it be possible to do away
> with the special status of language-tagged strings?
> 
> In RDF 1.1 literals consist of 3 components: lexical form, datatype
> IRI, and language tag.  The last component is only used in
> language-tagged strings.  Would it be possible to define
> `rdf:langString' as a regular datatype IRI and have literals consist
> of 2 components instead?
> 
> RDF 1.1 Concepts and Abstract Syntax currently contains many caveats
> to accommodate the idiosyncratic nature of language-tagged strings,
> e.g.,:
> 
>> Language-tagged strings have the datatype IRI http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#langString. No datatype is formally defined for this IRI because the definition of datatypes does not accommodate language tags in the lexical space. The value space associated with this datatype IRI is the set of all pairs of strings and language tags.
> 
> Would it be possible to define a regular lexical space, e.g.,
> containing "hello@en"^^rdf:langString, together with a value-2-lexical
> and a lexical-2-value mapping?
> 
> The N3 and SPARQL notation "hello"@en will of course still be
> available, and will be syntactic sugar for "hello@en"^^rdf:langString.
> 
> ---
> Best regards,
> Wouter Beek.
> 
> Email: w.g.j.beek@vu.nl
> WWW: https://wouterbeek.org
> Tel: +31647674624
> 
Received on Friday, 23 November 2018 11:49:12 UTC

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