Skip to toolbar

Community & Business Groups

Metric Spaces on the Web Community Group

Group closed on 2016-04-29.

The aim of this group is preparation for a future web standard for worldwide valid searchable metric spaces, so that these spaces can be defined by all domain name owners to all interesting topics.

Group's public email, repo and wiki activity over time

Note: Community Groups are proposed and run by the community. Although W3C hosts these conversations, the groups do not necessarily represent the views of the W3C Membership or staff.

No Reports Yet Published

Learn more about publishing.

Chairs, when logged in, may publish draft and final reports. Please see report requirements.

This group does not have a Chair and thus cannot publish new reports. Learn how to choose a Chair.

Uniformly defined Information: URL (of domain space definition) plus sequence of numbers

Let me mention that the approach has a good foundation:
Basically information means selection within a domain (value or definition set). For comparable information the domain should be the same for all. Strictly speaking for objectivity and precision of information the uniform definition of the domain is even precondition. Therefore the global (online) definition of the domain is proposed here. It is advantageous to define an ordered domain, because this allows using numbers for addressing the elements and because nature is ordered in many respects. If the original data are ordered in multiple independent ways, we can define a domain with multiple independent numeric dimensions to reflect this. Because we want to search information in the domain, for quantification of similarity we can define a distance function or metric. Therefore we propose “Domain Spaces” (“DSs”: online defined nestable metric spaces, ). With this searchable information can be represented in simple form as “Domain Vectors” (DVs):

URL (of common DS definition) plus sequence of numbers

Compared to words there are important advantages (objectivity, information content and concentration, range, resolution, efficiency etc.). DSs can make quantitative data searchable. They can make generally user defined information searchable. They can be used for globally uniform definition of complex information, e.g. medical findings ( ) . Of course we need a Web standard for DVs and DSs definitions. Though there are many possibilities for extensions, e.g. possibilities to reuse existing definitions in new definitions, we can try to make the basics as simple as possible. We can discuss this here.

Metric spaces for interoperable and searchable quantitative data on the web

Many thanks to all supporters of this group. There has been a long incubation period, but I hope we can now begin. Let me first explain why I have made this proposal: Quantitative data are very important. It would be useful (e.g. for decision support) to make quantitative data searchable on the web. So we need a data structure for identified and searchable (multidimensional) quantitative data. Metric spaces are a natural means for this because all elements of a metric space have a well defined distance. So it is possible to sort the search result according to distance (similarity search). Moreover it is possible to nest definitions (reuse existing definitions as parts of new definitions).

In nestable metric spaces are called “Domain Spaces” and described in detail. They can be defined by all web users according to their domains of interest. I propose this to start a discussion about the best approach. Feel free to ask questions and to make suggestions. Everyone who is interested is welcome to join the group.

Call for Participation in Metric Spaces on the Web

The Metric Spaces on the Web has been launched:

The aim of this group is preparation for a future web standard for worldwide valid searchable metric spaces, so that these spaces can be defined by all domain name owners to all interesting topics.

In order to join the group, you will need a W3C account.

This is a community initiative. This group was originally proposed on 2013-04-26 by Wolfgang Orthuber. The following people supported its creation: Wolfgang Orthuber, amitedu amit, amit asthana, Paul Caesar, Ethan Dagner. W3C’s hosting of this group does not imply endorsement of its activities.

The group now has access to W3C-hosted services for email, blog, wikis, irc, tracking tools, and more. Read more about tools and services available by default and upon request.

If you believe that there is an issue with this group that requires the attention of the W3C staff, please send us email on

Thank you,
W3C Community Development Team