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

Re: Bitzi File Metadata RDF Dump

From: Dan Brickley <danbri@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2001 12:28:37 -0400 (EDT)
To: "Sean B. Palmer" <sean@mysterylights.com>
cc: <Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com>, <aswartz@upclink.com>, <gojomo@bitzi.com>, <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0109261209230.3837-100000@tux.w3.org>

On Wed, 26 Sep 2001, Sean B. Palmer wrote:

> > > http://bitzi.com/lookup/3KIZIJB64XP3NCXAE4ISQZT3Q
> > > B2MN5R3IY2
> >
> > I have to respectfully disagree with your recommendation here,
> > Aaron.
> And I am going to have to respectfully "kinda" disagree with you both. IMO,
> I think that registering a MIME type for the bitprint may be a better idea
> (and is very easy to do), and then one could use something like:-
> data:text/prs.bitprint,3KIZIJB64XP3NCXAE4ISQZT3QNCTF7V
> Then again, I wouldn't have any particular objection to a new URN
> namespace, especially an informal one. I do agree with Patrick that due to
> the scope of the bitprints being in the interest of the Internet community
> in general, it would be improper to use HTTP space to identify them.


The whole *point* of the RDF design is to decentralise the creation of
machine-friendly descriptions on the Web. RDF is a technology designed by
people who believed there are better things to do with one's time than sit
on standardisation committees. A major goal was to have fewer central
registries, committees, bureaucratic bottlenecks. Yet somehow folks on
this list often seem drawn back towards these things we were trying to
escape! Committees, official looking URN schemes, centralised content-type
registries, all these have a role, but can also serve to disenfranchise
those who lack the resources to go through a registration/standardisation

RDF's central fiction says: "imagine a cartoon world of things,
types of thing, and types of relationships that connect those things.".
Through decentralising schema creation, RDF makes it cheap for people and
organisations to create new ways of describing those things. In RDF, we
made sure that these types of thing ("classes"), and types of relationship
("properties"), are just "more things in the Web". As such, they can be
created cheaply, with no need for central coordination, committees,
registries. Properties that are useful will proliferate in their usage,
properties that are carelessly defined or described, will languish un-used.

The Bitzi bitprint property looks like an incredibly useful one. But the
thing is to *use* it, not get distracted by premature standardisation. If
it turns out to be as useful as we hope, then doubtless various
organisations will sing its praises (in prose and in RDF). But
committee-style endorsement should follow rather than preceed use,
experimentation and deployment. IMHO much of the RDF design is informed by
this (perhaps unarticulated) attitude, and it is one of the technology's
characteristic strengths.


Received on Wednesday, 26 September 2001 12:29:12 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Friday, 17 January 2020 22:44:32 UTC