W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-rdf-interest@w3.org > August 2001

RE: Syntax vs Semantics vs XML Schema vs RDF Schema vs QNames vs URIs (was RE: Using urn:publicid: for namespaces)

From: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>
Date: Wed, 15 Aug 2001 13:24:25 +0300
Message-ID: <2BF0AD29BC31FE46B78877321144043114B4F0@trebe003.NOE.Nokia.com>
To: phayes@ai.uwf.edu
Cc: www-rdf-logic@w3.org, www-rdf-interest@w3.org
> >For those who are convinced that anonymous nodes are a good 
> thing, please
> >think about the implementational burden and 
> portability/interoperability
> >issues they may introduce.
> What burdens and issues? .

Specifically the need to refer to resources as a template of 
property values (i.e. [X namespace '...', X name '...'])
rather than a single opaque URI identifier.

Another is not knowing whether I will get back from a
query an anonymous node constituting the root of a collection,
containing resource nodes (or other collections) rather than 
an actual resource node -- or possibly getting a set of results
having both resource nodes *and* collection root nodes -- because
in one case in the *serialization* the values of a property were 
defined as a bag in the "same" statement and in another case 
each was defined as a separate statement! Yuck!

Collections which remain discrete in the RDF graph with
anonymous root nodes are in direct conflict to the need for
efficient and transparent run-time syndication of knowledge
from disparate sources. Why can't folks just admit that they
were influenced too much by HTML and the need to define basic
metadata for web pages, and just get rid of them?!

Even if XML collection structures are used as conveniences
to humans, such structures have no place IMO in the resultant
graph constituting the knowledge base but should be fully
and completely distilled into triples with no anonymous
nodes whatsoever. 

Issues such as ordering, set membership completion, etc. can
(and IMO should) all be addressed by additional statements
about those collection statements defining source, authority,
ordered ranking, etc. etc.

And the proliferation of proposals for even more anonymous-node 
based constructs such as for solving the QName to URI mapping 
problem really worries me. The core, fundamental data models
and mechanisms of the SW must be as simple, efficient, and
consistent as possible if we ever are to achieve a critical
mass of globally distributed knowledge.



Patrick Stickler                      Phone:  +358 3 356 0209
Senior Research Scientist             Mobile: +358 50 483 9453
Software Technology Laboratory        Fax:    +358 7180 35409
Nokia Research Center                 Video:  +358 3 356 0209 / 4227
Visiokatu 1, 33720 Tampere, Finland   Email:  patrick.stickler@nokia.com
Received on Wednesday, 15 August 2001 06:24:31 UTC

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