[rdfweb-dev] Names In FOAF

Jonathan Greensted jonathan.greensted at sentient.co.uk
Wed Apr 6 21:46:58 UTC 2005

Hi Dan & co

I am interested in the project and I do support bright people but I don't
support people wasting their time in mental masturbation.

I was really, really excited about the Semantic Web and RDF but quickly
realised that the "file format" is irrelevant since the intelligence lives
in the software which processes the data not the data format.

Surely RDF is like CSV or XML.   Do we really care?

The software needs to understand the format regardless on how it is
expressed so why do we care so much about the semantics?

If I write "Jonathan is a tosser" you understand what I mean but it's not
RDF, XML or CSV.  If you cared about the "is a tosser" vocab you would code
that explicitly.

I love the people on this list, you have all demonstrated you immense
intelligence but I feel you are wasting your time.

Have you looked at how the WS-* people are exchanging data?  Where does RDF
feature in this?  

Dead, dead, dead.  Next idea?  Move on and do something which really changes
the world.


PS. If you are even slightly offended by the above I apologies. 
PSS. If RDF/FOAF works for you great. The format is perfectly valid (or
flawed) but so is vCard etc.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Dan Brickley [mailto:danbri at w3.org] 
> Sent: 06 April 2005 16:19
> To: Jonathan Greensted
> Cc: rdfweb-dev at vapours.rdfweb.org
> Subject: Re: [rdfweb-dev] Names In FOAF
> Well, we got grief for things changing too fast, and being 
> too volatile, so things slowed down for a bit. But you're 
> right, there's need for a kick up the backside. One reason 
> for inactivity on the spec front was just that the software 
> which generates the script died. A couple of FOAF IRC meets 
> ago I tried to take myself out of that bottleneck by 
> soliciting volunteers to fix it. And Chris Schmidt kindly 
> took on the task. A couple of days ago, I plugged in his 
> rewrite of my script and regenerated the spec:
> 	http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/
> 	Namespace Document 3 April 2005 - (Back In Business Edition)
> 	$Date: 2005/04/04 16:08:07 $
> Regarding use of energies elsewhere, that is in fact one 
> reason for slow progress here: people have been working on 
> other RDF vocabularies that play alongside FOAF. Some of that 
> is happening within W3C; for example, you might take a look 
> at the work we're doing in the SW Best Practices WG, 
> http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/BestPractices/
> In particular, there is work on topic description (both SKOS, 
> and also mappings between RDF and the XML Topic Maps 
> approach). SKOS in particular is very important for FOAF, as 
> it allows us to cleanly describe and merge thesaurus-like, 
> and folksonomy-like information.
> There are some specs nearly published; editor's drafts at
> http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/BestPractices/#FreqLinks1
> -> http://www.w3.org/2004/02/skos/core/guide/
> Re the naming stuff, I've wondered before whether a W3C group 
> would be a more appropriate forum for it, particularly given 
> the I18N challenges. W3C groups have the advantage of meeting 
> in a high-bandwidth forum (telecons + occasional f2f). But 
> this can be a disadvantage for those who can't readily 
> participate this way. Re names, I like the direction Ian suggests.
> Anyway, thanks for your interest in the project.
> Dan

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