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   Re: [xml-dev] Why RDF is hard

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uche.ogbuji@fourthought.com (Uche Ogbuji) writes:
>Sorry, but I fond this argument specious.

[To start with the kicker.]

I don't expect my clients to understand every detail of what I create.
I do, however, expect them to be able to figure out the data formats in
which I store their information and I regularly solicit input on what
they need stored and how they want it stored.  XML lets me do that
easily.  None of the other technologies you mention in this message
comes within a thousand miles of that.  

>Markup is not "human" whasoever.

Markup is, IMHO, a wonderful balance between human and computer
accessibility.  Compared to pretty much any of the other tools we
computing folks are so fond of, it's extremely human.  

>XML is like RDF.  It starts out quite easy, and then gets hard quickly.

XML only "gets hard" if you throw features at people.  This is basic
markup with hierarchical element structures and a very few attributes.

>Did you have to explain what < meant in your presentation?  

Yes.  They thought it mildly weird.

>Did the presentation have any foreign languages so that when you
>showed the plain text in an American plain text processor you had to
>explain that the a-hat and other assorted squigglies were really
>Japanese writing?  

This markup uses English vocabulary and numbers.  It may see use in
other countries including some where the notes section will be in
languages difficult to present in standard English systems, but I don't
think that's actually relevant unless you expect me to be showing them
UTF-8 byte-by-byte.

>Did you have to talk about any processing (you know, to actually make
>the data useful).  Did you then have to explain to them SAX, DOM or
>data bindings?  BTW, you use Java.  Did you try explaining that code to
the folks you were working with?

I don't need to do that.  Showing them the markup shows them the
foundation of the work, and I made it very clear that my transformations
to SVG and my other processing and input are only one option for working
with that data.  These folks are primarily interested in having data in
a form they can use in multiple circumstances.  XML is the piece of the
puzzle that does that, and having that human-accessible makes an
enormous difference.

Simon St.Laurent - SSL is my TLA
http://simonstl.com may be my URI
http://monasticxml.org may be my ascetic URI
urn:oid: is another possibility altogether


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