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HTML entry point for the RDF Namespace?

From: Ivan Herman <ivan@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 2019 16:50:06 +0100
Message-Id: <9D02CDB9-F7DC-446E-A8E8-B98163097824@w3.org>
To: Semantic Web <semantic-web@w3.org>
Dear all,

I have just announced, in a separate mail[1] that some minor changes have been done on the RDF Core namespace[2]. While at it, I have looked at a discussion that occurred on the mailing list a while ago on whether there should be some human friendly version of the namespace document (duly served with content negotiations).

I have come up with a draft HTML file which is at a temporary URL for now:


the idea is that (simple) HTML file would be at https://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns.html and, via conneg, would be served if the request requires HTML. However, by setting the right conneg priorities, [2] would continue returning Turtle.

The slight fear I have, and for which I would like to get some feedback, is as follows. Imagine a buggy RDF implementation that uses some very simple tools to fetch [2], and that tool would ask, via some defaults, HTML. What will be returned is the no longer RDF but HTML, meaning that this RDF environment would break. The question is: is this a realistic worry, or am I too cautious? Ie, should we play very defensive and NOT set up this human friendly version of the vocabulary, or should we go ahead? Obviously, we are talking about aesthetic here and not some functionally necessary feature, so we can allow ourselves to be defensive…




[1] https://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/semantic-web/2019Dec/0027.html
[2] https://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns
[3] https://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/semantic-web/2019Mar/0092.html

Ivan Herman, W3C 
Home: http://www.w3.org/People/Ivan/
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ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0782-2704
Received on Monday, 16 December 2019 15:50:09 UTC

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