[rdfweb-dev] XSLTs for FOAF, Spring v1.3.1 and plans for FOAF spec improvements

Masahide Kanzaki post at kanzaki.com
Tue Jun 24 15:58:25 UTC 2003


>  Do these various approaches work for 100% of RDF/XML FOAF docs out there?
>  Maybe 80% Quite likely 100% of those files built by foaf-a-matic?
>  Are there lessons we can learn, eg. have the FOAF spec call out
>  a 'syntactic profile' of FOAF-in-RDF, so that we don't have needless and
>  confusing variation in the way FOAF is written in XML?

Partly because of the way I introduced FOAF, most Japanese foaf files are
first generated by Foaf-a-Matic, then edited to add some vocabularies
people want to include. Hence the syntax is based on current output of the

The vary important aspect of FOAF (at least here in Japan) is that FOAF is
getting to be the first entry point to RDF/Semantic Web for ordinary
people. There is RSS, but most of RSS feeds are generated by blog tools,
and is not easy to understand being RDF (or even is not RDF if they use RSS
2.0 template). So many people say 'I first time feel partly understand RDF'
or 'This is my first experience to touch SW, wow!' in their blogs or diary

I don't think the flexibility of RDF should be restricted in FOAF. But I
think the basic FOAF documentation should use consistent, easy to
understand syntax so that beginners might not be confused (many people may
not imagine there are different syntax possible). In that sense, there
could be a standard syntax, or 'syntactic profile' of FOAF-in-RDF.

And, people even learn XSLT first time in order to render their FOAF/RDF.
They copy an XSLT of front-runners, and modify it to meet their own
preferences. They enjoy it. Maybe those XSLTs don't work with other RDF
syntax, but that's no problem for them.

I hereby wrote just about the entry FOAF users (publishers). At the
developers level, there might be some different approaches.


KANZAKI,Masahide - post at kanzaki.com

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