RDF **vs** XML???

Didier PH Martin martind at netfolder.com
Sat Jul 31 23:45:14 BST 1999

Hi David,

Didier PH Martin writes:

 > After reading your comments it appeared to me that tacitly you have
 > this model (please correct me if this is wrong, I just guessed it
 > from trying to understand your position)
 > a) XML DTD based documents are more documents in the classical sense like
 > for instance a report, a book, etc...
 > b) RDF based document are more for data exchange and more particularly
 > data base data exchange.

David said:
No, this is wrong -- my model is that RDF (or something similar, like
XMI) is a layer of abstraction *above* XML, just as an object layer
can be an abstraction above a set of database tables.  I can imagine
similar layers of abstraction that would be useful for more prosaic
(in the literal sense) documents, but both layers have XML in common

Saying that RDF is an alternative to XML is like saying that HTTP is
an alternative to IP.

Didier says:
OK, I badly expressed myself. Let's state it differently.
a) Wasn't XML with the purpose of allow you to create domain languages?
d) Was RDF originally intended for meta data?

Was then use a meta data domain language to encode data base records? You
could have encoded it with your own domain language. In fact, what is useful
about rdf is not its elements but more its schema part. When XML will have a
schema language as good as the rdf schema language or if both are united
then I guess there is no need to use rdf.

But the original intent of rdf is to add meta data information about
resources. This is why you have such construct:

<rdf:description about="http://www.netfolder.com/DSSSL">

The elements intentionally have the "description about" keywords.

Didier PH Martin
mailto:martind at netfolder.com

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