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Re: [ontolog-forum] Need advice - Request a quick opinion on ontology l

To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 27 May 2011 10:33:59 -0400
Message-id: <4DDFB657.8020604@xxxxxxxxxxx>
On 5/27/2011 7:49 AM, Kingsley Idehen wrote:
> I wouldn't consider what we do in Virtuoso (which by the way
> is built by a team of developers with strong LISP backgrounds
> amongst other things) as being trivial. We are able to make scalable
> Linked Data views over relational data sources on the fly etc.. We have
> a hybrid data server (which combines conventional database management
> and middleware functionality).
> Virtuoso came to be in 1998.    (01)

I apologize for using the word 'trivial'.    (02)

But your example proves my point: (a) the team had a strong background
in LISP and AI technology, (b) you started in 1998 when the SW was in
its infancy, so you used pre-SW technology, and (c) you did what the
SW gang should have done:  integrate the SW ideas with mainstream IT.    (03)

> Please do understand that when it comes to DBMS and Middleware matters I
> don't take my cues from TimBL or the W3C, I just don't. I come from a
> different place re.  data virtualization, access, integration, and
> management.    (04)

That's fine.  I wasn't criticizing your work.  I was complaining about
the failure of the SW to do the kind of integration that you have been
doing.    (05)

> BTW - we have a declarative meta schema language, and the only value
> that R2RML offers to us is the ability to import and export declarations
> of Linked Data Views that's portable with other systems to do similar.    (06)

Again, you're confirming my point.  If the SW had adopted LISP as the
base notation, you wouldn't even need those conversion tools.    (07)

The reason why I like JSON is that it's just LISP with brackets and
braces to clarify the levels of nesting.    (08)

>> That is the best of both worlds -- and they implemented it in 1994.
> Hmm. It was just OK    (09)

Of course.  It was a prototype implemented for a PhD dissertation.
But it demonstrated (a) a physical representation that supported
*both* relational (SQL) and path-based queries, and (b) algorithms
that were *more* efficient than tables for the relational view
and *more* efficient than triple stores for path-based views.    (010)

The importance of separating the logical views from the physical
layout had been recognized in the 1970s.  In the 1990s, there was
no excuse for not supporting both relational and path-based views
on an equal basis.    (011)

Even today, there are a lot more programmers in the world who
know SQL than SPARQL or any other SW technology.    (012)

>> ... it's been 17 years since that publication in 1994, and the W3C
>> still hasn't got the message.
> Sorta, I still have my fingers crossed re. their ability to learn
> from mistakes made in the past.    (013)

Again, I emphasize that the W3C is a committee that makes technical
decisions by voting.  Committees are very good at finding faults and
cleaning up de facto standards.  But they are terrible in creating
totally new (or as they say "proactive") standards.    (014)

I expect real innovation to come from individuals (e.g. Perl or PHP),
small, innovative companies (e.g., small businesses, such as Google
used to be), or influential innovators in big businesses (e.g.,
Steve Jobs).    (015)

John    (016)

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