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Re: XML observation

From: Graham Klyne <gk@ninebynine.org>
Date: Tue, 08 Jul 2003 16:56:55 +0100
Message-Id: <>
To: Martin Duerst <duerst@w3.org>, pat hayes <phayes@ihmc.us>, w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org
Cc: w3c-i18n-ig@w3.org

At 10:01 08/07/03 -0400, Martin Duerst wrote:
>>There a couple of other data I'd like to introduce:  in his pre-last-call 
>>review of the RDF concepts document, Tim Berners-Lee expressed some 
>>concern about the "distinguished" nature of XML in RDF [1].  That was a 
>>comment which was never really given a lot of attention that I was aware 
>>of, and is one which I personally agree.  Similar sentiments have been 
>>expressed in an exchange between Patrick and Peter Patel-Schneider [2].
>I discussed this with Tim a few weeks ago. He was not aware of
>the fact that you don't need an infoset to handle XML literals
>in RDF.

Hmmm... I'm not sure what the implication of this may be.

RDF/XML syntax is (now) defined in terms of the XML infoset
of the containing XML document.  So, I think, that suggests that
XML literals in RDF/XML must likewise be defined.  Or maybe not,
because RDF literals are defined (in some cases partly) in terms
of the Unicode string that represents the literal.
At best, it feels rather convoluted.

>And the inclusion of XML literals in RDF is not a mistake, it's
>important for i18n reasons. I feel it's terribly sad that this
>gets ignored here time and again.

You don't quite say this, but this suggests the purpose of XML
literals in RDF is for I18N.  If so, this would be the first time
I've heard that suggested.

This is very suggestive of the role of XML as text-with-markup, and
to my mind does little to square that role with XML-for-arbitrary-data.
I find this lack of clarity about the role of XML to be really unsettling,
because, as Pat has pointed out, there are some real tensions here.

(Hmmm... general W3C process point:
given I18N is regarded as so fundamental, I think the purpose would be
better served by having I18N *participation* from the beginning, or
at the beginning, not occasional reviews later in the process.)


Graham Klyne
PGP: 0FAA 69FF C083 000B A2E9  A131 01B9 1C7A DBCA CB5E
Received on Tuesday, 8 July 2003 12:47:51 UTC

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