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RE: [xml-dev] Marketplace XML Vocabularies

On Tue, 2010-01-05 at 09:38 +0000, Michael Kay wrote:
> > 
> > I claim that there is no intrinsic meaning in an XML 
> > document, but rather that external knowledge is applied to 
> > infer meaning.
> I agree.
> > 
> > This is very different from RDF, where explicit URIs are 
> > used, 
> I disagree. The URI http://www.ibm.com/plans-for-new-supercomputer.xml
> has no more intrinsic meaning than the tag <i>.

We have to be careful not to get too mired down with semiotics...what
do we mean by meaning... for sure there's a sense in which no string
has any "intrinsic" meaning, it's just a sequence of characters...

The URI is an unambiguous identifier, and I'm not really sure I'd want
to try to go too much further... I don't share the idea for example that
anyone can assign an authoritative URI to represent a person, a dog, a
snowflake, or any other real-life object.

I think you're right that a URI doesn't have any more meaning than any
other string, a priori, but we can look at it and, knowing it to be a
URI, get an unambiguous name.

Of course, there are lots of other ways of getting unambiguous names,
I'm not trying to promote one, but was actually trying (badly) to say
that I think the ambiguity that XML names afford is not a bad thing.


Liam Quin - XML Activity Lead, W3C, http://www.w3.org/People/Quin/
Pictures from old books: http://fromoldbooks.org/
Ankh: irc.sorcery.net irc.gnome.org www.advogato.org

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