W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-rdf-interest@w3.org > April 2002

Re: silly question about rdf:about

From: Dave Beckett <dave.beckett@bristol.ac.uk>
Date: Sun, 07 Apr 2002 19:14:53 +0100
To: Seth Russell <seth@robustai.net>
cc: www-rdf-interest <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>, Sandro Hawke <sandro@w3.org>
Message-ID: <8982.1018203293@tatooine.ilrt.bris.ac.uk>
>>>Seth Russell said:
> I totally agree, and thanks for saying it !
> And while we're at it why not just leave the old 'rdf:about' alone for
> people who like built-in properties in their systems and make up a new
> property name ... call it something obvious ... like for instance 'uri'.

You can do whatever you like with a new property of course :)

> And while were at that, why not invent another useful property ... something
> to mean 'preferred human friendly name' ... this would be like a cyc
> constant, a kif term, or a rdf:label.  The thing that is different between
> it and rdf:about (aside from the fact that it would be human user friendly)
> is that it can change (be renamed) from time to time and from system to
> system.  But in any given system at any given time it would be unique.  For
> a moment let's just call this new term ':named'.   Nodes so named internally
> would be tied to URI like this:
>     [:uri <http://foo/#Dog>;
>       :named  "Doggie"].
> We could say that in XML\RDF with:


>    <rdf:Description rdf:about="http://foo/#Dog">
>         <:named>Doggie</:named>
>    </rdf:Description>

and illegal too; :named isn't allowed in XML Namespaces.  Try using
http://www.w3.org/RDF/Validator/ to check these things.

However, rdfs:label already exists, so why not just use that?

Defined as: "Provides a human-readable version of a resource name."
-- http://www.w3.org/TR/2000/CR-rdf-schema-20000327/

And indeed, people have used that in most rdf schemas.

> Another useful property (that you might like) would be 'local name'.  This
> would be used to publish blank node anchors to the external world:
>     [a :Dollar;
>      :givenTo :Sandro;
>      :givenBy :Seth;
>      :localName <uuid:Sue1638877566348489>]
> What namespace should we use for these kinds of terms ?

Anything you like, but I expect your definition of local would be the
crucial thing.  All those ':foo' n3 names will have to be given URIs.

Received on Sunday, 7 April 2002 14:14:58 UTC

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