NOTE: This paper and the other pages on this web site are preserved here mainly for historical reasons. They have been prepared in the years 2000 and 2001, when the specifications of RDF and RDFS were still somewhat tentative. Not all of the links work anymore. However, this document may still provide you with some insight into the semantics of RDF -- though beware, the official model theory is where you should look for definitive answers to your questions (though, admittedly, the answers to your questions may not be found there too easily... ;) [Wolfram Conen, April 2008]

Logical Interpretations of RDFS - A Compatibility Guide

(see also: [A Logical Interpretation of RDF ],[RDF Schema Explorer (not online anymore)],[Utilizing Host Formalisms to Extend RDF Semantics],[XRDF],[Online RDF-to-XRDF converter (not online anymore)])

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This paper compares the semantics (or stated more precisely: an interpretation of the intended semantics) of RDF and RDFS (as previously captured in [Logical Interpretation of RDF]) with the semantics defined by the new upcoming RDF Model Theory (see [Version of 05-11-2001-12:00-GMT] or for for the lastest version [Editors Draft]). While the RDF Model Theory Draft (MT) relies on seT theory, we interpret the MT utilizing a horn subset of first order logic. On one hand, this may facilitate comprehensibility, on the other hand it may lead more directly to verifiable implementations. The comparison clearly demonstrates the differences between both interpretations and discusses some consequence of the non-backward compatible treatment of range/domain properties. It may thus help active developers to understand the consequences of the changes for existing RDF schemata and to adapt their RDF/RDFS applications accordingly where possible.


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Wolfram Conen: conen [a] gmx [.] de
Reinhold Klapsing: formerly University of Essen, Germany