Here's an opportunity to contribute to the shape of linguistic history in the Web world. The fine folk of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) inform us that the RDF Data Access Working Group is conducting its third Last Call Working Draft (take a breath) for SPARQL Query Language for RDF. Unless you're banking on a fourth Last Call, get involved and quickly to cement your opinion on the mutable 'net.What is RDF, why is it relevant and why does SPARQL care about creating a query language for it? The purpose of RDF (Resource Description Framework) is to provide a mechanism for encoding and interpreting resources so software can read it, enabling the software to then access and execute data in a way that makes sense to the end user. In short, RDF is a labeled graph data format for interpreting descriptive information to a machine.
Put to creative use, RDF can lead to new methods for web feed data-mashing, a young but elastic trend brought to popular attention by developing offerings like Yahoo! Pipes. In this way it takes RSS, an acronym better understood in Web 2.0 pop culture (if such a thing exists), and expands its possibilities.
SPARQL gives developers and clients a way to create and consume search results across multivariant data, regardless of whether said data is stored natively (as RDF) or viewed as RDF through middleware.
In line with FOAF (semantic web vapourware for the masses!), SPARQL organizes information mainly concerned with people and habits - personal data, social networks and metadata about digital artifacts like music and images. It then takes this information and makes it possible to integrate it over numerous and even disparate sources. The results of SPARQL queries are results sets or RDF graphs.
In essence, SPARQL Query Language for RDF working draft is a specification that defines the future of syntax and semantics of RDF's SPARQL query language.
Sounds neat, right? It's not just neat. It's laying the groundwork for the innovations we'll take for granted tomorrow. Contribute to the Last Call Working Draft for "SPARQL Query Language for RDF." Time's a-wastin' - comments need to be in by April 18.
In related goings-on, W3C brings eight new family values to XML and brings CMS to audio.