Denotation as a Two-Step Mapping in Semantic Web Architecture

author: David Booth, Cleveland Clinic
published: Aug. 3, 2009,   recorded: July 2009,   views: 3251

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In RDF, URIs are used to denote resources -- things in the universe of discourse. According to RDF semantics, an interpretation defines the mapping from a URI to a resource. Many interpretations may be consistent with a given RDF graph, and RDF semantics does not specify how to select a suitable interpretation from among the possible candidates. In other writings the author has advocated that in semantic web architecture, such denotation should be viewed as a two-step mapping: from the URI to a set of core assertions specified in a URI declaration, and thence to the resource. The reason for this view is that it permits a consistent resource identity to be associated with a URI: the constraints expressed in the URI declaration represent a common identity for that URI. This paper shows how this view of denotation corresponds to established RDF semantics.

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