The new Data Activity at W3C

This is the last entry in this blog… A few days ago W3C started a new activity, called Data Activity, that also subsumes the (by now old) Semantic Web Activity. In order to have a fresh start, and to avoid confusion; a new blog has been set up for the Data Activity, replacing the current one (the RSS feed of that new blog can be accessed, too). Instead of giving a background for the new activity here, let me simply refer to the description given by Phil Archer, the new Activity lead. Meet you at the new blog!

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RDF Json Alternate Serialization (RDF/JSON) Published

The RDF Working Group has published a Group Note of RDF 1.1 JSON Alternate Serialization (RDF/JSON). The Resource Description Framework (RDF) is a framework for representing information in the Web. This document defines a textual syntax for RDF called RDF/JSON that allows an RDF graph to be completely written in a form compatible with the JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) and alternative to the one recommended in JSON-LD. The syntax defined in this document should not be used unless there is a specific reason to do so. Use of JSON-LD is recommended.

Proposed Recommendations for JSON-LD

The RDF Working Group has published two Proposed Recommendations today:

  • JSON-LD 1.0. JSON is a useful data serialization and messaging format. This specification defines JSON-LD, a JSON-based format to serialize Linked Data. The syntax is designed to easily integrate into deployed systems that already use JSON, and provides a smooth upgrade path from JSON to JSON-LD. It is primarily intended to be a way to use Linked Data in Web-based programming environments, to build interoperable Web services, and to store Linked Data in JSON-based storage engines. Comments are welcome through 05 December.
  • JSON-LD 1.0 Processing Algorithms and API. This specification defines a set of algorithms for programmatic transformations of JSON-LD documents. Restructuring data according to the defined transformations often dramatically simplifies its usage. Furthermore, this document proposes an Application Programming Interface (API) for developers implementing the specified algorithms. Comments are welcome through 05 December.

W3C Invites Implementations of five Candidate Recommendations for version 1.1 of the Resource Description Framework (RDF)

The RDF Working Group today published five Candidate Recommendations for version 1.1 of the Resource Description Framework (RDF), a widespread and stable technology for data interoperability:

  • RDF 1.1 Concepts and Abstract Syntax defines the basics which underly all RDF syntaxes and systems. It provides for general data interoperability.
  • RDF 1.1 Semantics defines the precise semantics of RDF data, supporting use with a wide range of “semantic” or “knowledge” technologies.
  • RDF 1.1 N-Triples defines a simple line-oriented syntax for serializing RDF data. N-Triples is a minimalist subset of Turtle.
  • RDF 1.1 TriG defines an extension to Turtle (aligned with SPARQL) for handling multiple RDF Graphs in a single document.
  • RDF 1.1 N-Quads defines an extension to N-Triples for handling multiple RDF Graphs in a single document.

All of these technologies are now stable and ready to be widely implemented. Each specification (except Concepts) has an associated Test Suite and includes a link to an Implementation Report showing how various software currently fares on the tests. If you maintain RDF software, please review these specifications, update your software if necessary, and (if relevant) send in test results as explained in the Implementation Report.

RDF 1.1 is a refinement to the 2004 RDF specifications, designed to simplify and improve RDF without breaking existing deployments.

Event Report: Multimedia Archives and Metadata for Digital Publishing

The W3C Germany and Austria office has published a report on the Multimedia Archives and Metadata for Digital Publishing September 2013 event, which was jointly held with Xinnovations. The metadata topic is covered in detail in the report and shows high relevance for a wide range of technologies – from Semantic Web to Digital Publishing and Web technology in general – and application areas: from general or scientific publishers and libraries to Wikipedia related communities. More information in German is provided by a dedicated press release.

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W3C Workshop Report: RDF Validation: Practical Assurances for Quality RDF Data

W3C today published the final report of the Workshop on RDF Validation: Practical Assurances for Quality RDF Data that was held 10-11 September 2013 in Cambridge.

The goal of the Workshop was to identify use cases, requirements, and candidate technologies to address the need for interface definition and validation for RDF documents and messages. The 20 presentations focused on current and future requirements and solutions. Discussion sessions focused on consensus-building around scope and next steps.

This workshop laid the groundwork for W3C to develop a human and machine-readable description of the “shape” of the RDF graphs that a service produces or consumes. This description should be usable for validation, form-generation, as well as human-readable documentation. The participants further agreed that the solution must provide a declarative way of describing simple integrity constraints along with an extension mechanism that allows using technologies such as SPARQL to specify more complex constraints.

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New draft for the vCard Ontology

The Semantic Web Interest Group has published a new Working Draft of vCard Ontology. The document describes a mapping of the vCard specification (RFC6350) to RDF/OWL. The goal is to promote the use of vCard for the description of people and organizations utilizing semantic web techniques and allowing compatibility with traditional vCard implementations.

Last Call Working Draft published for TriG

The W3C RDF Working Group has published a Last Call Working Draft of TriG. This document defines a textual syntax for RDF called TriG that allows an RDF dataset to be completely written in a compact and natural text form, with abbreviations for common usage patterns and datatypes. TriG is an extension of the Turtle format. Comments are welcome through 11 October.

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JSON-LD feature freeze and call for implementation

The RDF Working Group and the JSON-LD Community Group published the Candidate Recommendation of JSON-LD 1.0, and JSON-LD 1.0 Processing Algorithms and API. This signals the beginning of the call for implementations for JSON-LD 1.0.

JSON-LD harmonizes the representation of Linked Data in JSON by describing a common JSON representation format for expressing directed graphs; mixing both Linked Data and non-Linked Data in a single document. The syntax is designed to not disturb already deployed systems running on JSON, but provide a smooth upgrade path from JSON to JSON-LD. It is primarily intended to be a way to use Linked Data in Web-based programming environments, to build interoperable Linked Data Web services, and to store Linked Data in JSON-based storage engines.

The JSON-LD 1.0 specification describes the JSON-LD language in a way that is useful to authors. It also provides the core grammar of the language for implementers. The JSON-LD 1.0 Algorithms and API specification describes useful Algorithms for working with JSON-LD data. It also specifies an Application Programming Interface that can be used to transform JSON-LD documents in order to make them easier to work with in programming environments like JavaScript, Python, and Ruby.