Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community
The RDF version of Dublin Core is open for comments. I still have a fondness for RDF, despite what I've said about the Semantic Web because, after all, RDF is about relations. Connections. But I sometimes wish I could keep the standards people away from it. Take, for example, the integer '43'. Here's how I express it: 43. RDF-DC? It takes seven lines. We have to stop trying to specify the exact interpretation in the document and let users apply their own interpretation in the context. In programming, this is called Duck Typing. "If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it must be a duck." We need to allow that, if it looks like an integer, it probably is an integer. At most, if we've specified the schemas in the header, we should need to do no more than "age = 43" in the body. Using the appropriate brackets for RDF or JSON or whatever we're working with (and we will leave aside the question of why it is we have still not figured out a simple and common way of saying "age=43" after all these years).

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada

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Last Updated: Feb 01, 2023 10:40 a.m.