Thursday, December 14, 2006

When to use RDF 

Bob DuCharme
The RDF/OWL strength that makes it popular for semantic web work is its ability to query collections of data in the same domain that aren't necessarily all of identical structure. A collection of insurance policies from different companies will have some fields in common, some different fields, some fields that look different but mean the same thing... treating them as a consistent collection will take a lot of XQuery custom coding, but with RDF + SPARQL, it will only take the application of an increasingly popular standard way of specifying the semantics of each company's forms (OWL) to treat the collection as a single aggregate to query. If you add a set of insurance forms from another insurance company to the set, you only need to add a little more to your OWL, and you can leave your SPARQL queries alone. Done the XQuery way, accounting for this new data will mean checking all your FLWOR expressions to see whether they need revision.

Topics: RDF | XQuery | Data2.0

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