[Top] [All Lists]

Re: [ontolog-forum] Fwd: Fields in Core: 'RDF in core code sprint' at gr

To: dodds@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 18 Apr 2009 10:14:16 -0400
Message-id: <49E9E038.8070407@xxxxxxxxxxx>
A wonderful example that shows what happens when people abandon
the KISS principle (Keep It Simple, Sir):    (01)

ED> There are only a few months left before the code freeze on
 > September 1st.  Now that Fields API has settled in core, it's
 > time to extend it with some RDF semantics.    (02)

If you follow the chain of pointers, you get to the following:    (03)

    http://api.drupal.org/api/group/field_structs/7    (04)

Field API> The Field API defines two primary data structures, Field
 > and Instance, and the concept of a Bundle.  A Field defines a
 > particular type of data that can be attached to objects.  A Field
 > Instance is a Field attached to a single Bundle. A Bundle is a
 > set of fields that are treated as a group by the Field Attach API.    (05)

That sounds impressive until you start thinking about it.  Why do
people design an API first before "extending" it with semantics?
Why do they need an international conference to decide on semantics?
Why would they put three similar terms (bundle, set, group) in a
sentence that says the first one is the second, which is treated as
the third?  Maybe if they had started with n-tuples instead of just
triples, they wouldn't need bundles and wouldn't have "issues".    (06)

Remember how RDF began?  Guha had been the associate director of Cyc,
and he felt that Cyc had become too complicated.  So he wanted to
design something very simple.  So he developed a notation based on
n-tuples, and the simplest useful n-tuple seemed to be a triple.    (07)

Then he teamed up with Tim Bray, who was an XML expert, and together
they used XML to support triples.  But XML has multiple nooks and
crannies for putting extra little pieces of information.  So they
"took advantage of" those features (AKA "crapped up" the triples).    (08)

Now they have international conferences to resolve "issues" about
something that started out so incredibly simple.    (09)

Guha thought that logic was too complicated for the poor benighted
programmers.  But he vastly underestimated them.  They had been
using first-order logic under the name SQL for 30 years, and they
never had "issues" about n-tuples.    (010)

There are no "issues" about first-order logic.  Frege's version
of 1879 and Peirce's version of 1885 were independently developed,
their notations were vastly different, but they were identical
in semantics, and every notation for classical first order logic
invented since then is also identical in semantics to those two.    (011)

Nobody ever talks about "aligning" two different versions of
classical FOL, because the mapping is obvious, and there are
no issues.  There haven't been any issues for over a century.
Furthermore, the complete syntax for a typical notation can be
written on one side of one sheet of paper.    (012)

John Sowa    (013)

PS:  Has anybody seriously wondered why Google, the most successful
web company on the planet, uses JSON instead of RDF?    (014)

Message Archives: http://ontolog.cim3.net/forum/ontolog-forum/  
Config Subscr: http://ontolog.cim3.net/mailman/listinfo/ontolog-forum/  
Unsubscribe: mailto:ontolog-forum-leave@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Shared Files: http://ontolog.cim3.net/file/
Community Wiki: http://ontolog.cim3.net/wiki/ 
To join: http://ontolog.cim3.net/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?WikiHomePage#nid1J
To Post: mailto:ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx    (015)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>