[foaf-protocols] WebID Incubator Charter draft

Kingsley Idehen kidehen at openlinksw.com
Fri Dec 17 04:12:09 CET 2010

On 12/16/10 8:23 PM, Jiří Procházka wrote:
>> I've tried. It can be done without mandating a lingua franca -- overtly
>> >  or covertly.
> This is what I leave to be convinced about. IMHO unless some direct
> mind-sharing is going on, information has to be transfered using data,
> which is encoding of information using a set of symbols and some rules,
> known as language.
> Some people want to have non-self-modifying apps which can talk with all
> WebID agents, and in your scenario if such app encounters a WebID agent
> which talks only using a syntaxes unknown to the app, it somehow has to
> learn one of them (delegating this to web services is unacceptable in
> eyes of these people).
> We could make it a rule all syntaxes have to be
> defined using particular BNF syntax which the apps would know how to
> parse and "learn" the syntaxes, but that is just pushing the syntax
> abstraction one level further (re the PS of my previous mail). So as I
> understand it, you know of a different way, please explain.
> Jiri
I think implementers can live with a 3-tuple data structure in 
Entity-Attribute-Value or Subject-Predictate-Object form with regards to 
construction of structured profiles that are associated with public 
keys. I also think user agents can negotiate their preferred 
representations of the aforementioned data structure - overtly or 
covertly. There is an ecosystem for middleware at many layers. HTTP is 
middleware, for instance :-)

If you parse the paragraph above, it doesn't break anything on the 
Semantic Web side and it doesn't inject RDF into the conversation en 
route to repelling potential participants.

Remember, HTML wasn't forced upon anyone, it grew into an force based on 
adoption, critical mass, and opportunity cost crystallization i.e., 
laying down the critical proposition: spend time you don't have 
reinventing it or get on the bus before you get left behind.

I outline a repeating pattern above re. our industry. RDF's futile 
attempt to break this time tested pattern that has led to its negative 
(typically) and enigmatic status (at best) over the years. Claiming to 
be everything (markup - RDF, model - RDF, and logic - RDF) only makes 
matters worse.



Kingsley Idehen	
President&  CEO
OpenLink Software
Web: http://www.openlinksw.com
Weblog: http://www.openlinksw.com/blog/~kidehen
Twitter/Identi.ca: kidehen

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