[foaf-protocols] adding Ping to Simple WebID based Resource ACL

Story Henry henry.story at bblfish.net
Sat May 22 18:47:40 CEST 2010

On 22 May 2010, at 16:33, Nathan wrote:

> Story Henry wrote:
>> On 21 May 2010, at 19:57, Nathan wrote:
>>> Story Henry wrote:
>>>> On 21 May 2010, at 12:50, mike amundsen wrote:
>>>>>> You're now added to the ACL list.
>>>>> and it works like a champ!
>>>> We next need to add an automatic ping software to make this so that anyone can test it.
>>>> And perhaps even a form so we can remove ourselves from the group.
>>>> Idea: ping to add ourselves to the group. Use foaf+ssl to access a form to remove ourselves form the group. The people can see the difference between when they are in and when they are out.
>>> finally caught up & whilst I'd like a chance to implement some pinging - I don't think this is the right use case.
>> We need a simple use case to test ping, and see that it works. This is a very simple
>> one to get started.
>>> Why do we have to go to all this trouble, when in each of our foaf's we could simply add the triple
>>> #me sioc:member_of <group> .
>>> and be done with it?
>> And how will Kingsley's server know you are now a member of the group? Unless you ping him, he'd have to crawl the whole internt - an impossible task - to find your file.
> it'd be in my foaf file, which he already needs to dereference and pull in to auth my foaf+ssl, so he'd already have the info.. :)

Ok, I see the smiley.  Let me answer nevertheless ignoring it. 

The above (without smiley) would be rather selfish position, as you would place
your own participation in the group above that of allowing new members to join.
Such selfishness is also self defeating, as you'd end up being in a group of only 
a few members.

> two sides to what I'm saying:
> If we're going to implement things I feel we should do the the 'Right Way' and creating a server side API (however basic) for something that doesn't actually need one, is, imho, not a good way to do the test implementation of a new technology (the ping process & onto) - any feedback which comes from it may not be expressly correct.

We need the ping api to make it easy for people to get added to other people's foaf file, in an automatic way. Ping is used very widely in the blogosphere. We have just simplified it to a HTTP Form, and made it more user friendly in the process. Not a minor feat considering that we are up against the blogosphere, that claimed simplicity to be on their side.

So I consider it is done right :-)

> On the flip side, obviously I'm keen to implement the ping process and onto and get this model working, so all cool with doing it this way too, just personally keeping it in mind that it's not the only option :)

yes, there are other ways, but this is the absolute simplest. In the semweb we have to be very careful not to give people the feeling that we are forcing a "Semantic Web tax". What is cool about this ping API is that it is SIMPLER! than the one bloggers used. We are now showing how the semantic web can simplify things - or make things possible that were impossible before.

> Will give it a go over the weekend, quite sure it should be easy enough to implement.


I want to implement this too as soon as I have resolved these #@!% bugs on foafssl.org.

> aside: also worth considering that typical sparql update could be used to add and remove the triples too, but that would mean somebody else could remove your membership, so has draw backs.

yes, and many platforms have no SPARQL update, it's not standardised yet, and is quite a lot more to ask people to learn that an html form. Nobody can say that an html form is too complicated without thereby excluding themselves from even basic web engineering conversation.

> regardless, keen to see how this progresses - should be good!
> ps: no need to reply, just stating my thoughts on the matter

Ah, sorry, just read this now. Too late :-)

> Best,
> Nathan

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