W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org > February 2002

Re: Even more simplified datatyping proposal

From: Pat Hayes <phayes@ai.uwf.edu>
Date: Thu, 21 Feb 2002 18:44:58 -0600
Message-Id: <p05101417b89b43e318d3@[]>
To: Graham Klyne <Graham.Klyne@MIMEsweeper.com>
Cc: w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org
>At 06:55 PM 2/20/02 -0600, Pat Hayes wrote:
>>I think it is better to hold a gun to Dan's head (or maybe its the 
>>Dublin Core's head) and insist that if he wants to say literals 
>>denote themselves (or strings, if you like), then that is a 
>>datatyping decision, and he should be explicit about it. All he has 
>>to to do is to add
>>rdfs:dlex rdfs:subPropertyOf xsd:string .
>>to his graph, and he's got it locked down tight: every time he uses 
>>a literal anywhere in that graph, it's got to be interpreted using 
>>xsd:string. Its not a default or anything else underhand or 
>>'magical': if he tries to add any other datatyping information to 
>>his graph with this in it, he's going to get an explicit clash. Now 
>>everyone is wearing their datatyping assumptions on their sleeves.
>Hmmm... I can't say I like that as a solution,

Well, bear in mind that one isn't obliged to 'lock it down' in this 
way. You can just say nothing and use undatatyped literals, and then 
you are being vague about exactly what they denote. That is always an 
option which will not produce any clashes. Of course then it is 
vulnerable to a foreign datatype take-over, as it were; but I don't 
see how we can have it both ways. Datatypes really CAN clash, so if 
we use them explicitly, then a clash can happen and be detected; and 
if we don't use them, then our intentions might get mistaken by 
someone else with a different datatype in mind.

>  for reasons noted elsewhere (merging disparate information 
>sources).  I was going to suggest using a property other than 
>rdfs:dlex, but then remembered that it's bound to the understanding 
>of x foo "lit".
>I can't see any way out of this, so maybe the health warnings just 
>need to be *very* prominent and explicit [**].  Bring on the Typhoid 
>epidemic ;-)

I don't think it will be that bad. Plain RDF is always safe, after all.

>Now, if we had contexts...

Oh, indeed, indeed.


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Received on Thursday, 21 February 2002 19:45:01 UTC

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