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Re: #rdfms-difference-between-ID-and-about (every document is inthe Web)

From: pat hayes <phayes@ai.uwf.edu>
Date: Mon, 25 Jun 2001 16:57:43 -0500
Message-Id: <v04210113b75d630fd200@[]>
To: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
Cc: w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org
>pat hayes wrote:
> > >But meanwhile, the 10 year history of the Web
> > >is evidence that this axiom is useful; can we agree that
> > >for the purposes of the RDF spec, every document is in the Web?
> >
> > No, we cannot. I refuse to accept as an axiom something that I know
> > to be false and, moreover, I know to be false because I can make it
> > false in a few seconds by writing something with a pen on a piece of
> > paper.
>Again: *for the purposes of the RDF spec*. The thing
>you write with a pen on a piece of paper is not in
>scope of the RDF spec. Unless you happen to be scribbling
>RDF on a piece of paper; but even then, if you regard
>it as an RDF document, I'm asking that you agree
>that it has a URI.
>The reason is that this is the way the XML specs work.
>There are two coherent designs:
>	(a) an XML document's base URI is intrinsic
>	to that document. We speak of "the base URI
>	of a document." If you copy some <stuff/> from
>	one place in the Web to another, the result
>	is a different XML document.
>	(b) an XML document may be paired with a base URI,
>	but that base URI isn't intrinsic to a document.
>	The same <stuff/> appearing at different addresses
>	in the Web is the very same XML document.
>The XML specs (XPath first, I believe, then Infoset, schema,
>etc.) use design (a). Since the choice is arbitrary,
>as far as I can tell, it would be silly for RDF to try
>to use (b).

Ah, now I see what you mean. Yes, I agree with (a) over (b), though I 
really don't like that way of putting it, ie "every document is on 
the web", as that suggests a much hairier metaphysical claim. I would 
rather say, RDF only talks about documents with a URI, or is 
restricted to documents with a URI.

>[I'd rather not continue, in this forum,
>the philosophical discussion
>about which things have names and which things
>can have names etc. Sorry I started it.]

Fine with me. Sorry I misunderstood what you were saying.


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Received on Monday, 25 June 2001 17:58:28 UTC

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