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Comments on RDF: not for the faint of heart

a digital magpie

Updated: 2016-10-24T13:44:47Z


By: Jon Hanna


The two things you say you’ve found confusing are actually the same thing – the rdf:Seq.
”#genid1” is what your RDF parser is using to refer to the Seq. Remember RDF parsers treat everything as a URI if they can’t, stuff like #genid1 (not the best way for a parser to do it, but not dreadful) is the RDF parser picking a name for something it doesn’t have a URI for.

Somewhere else in your triples you’ll find one with the channel as the subject, as the predicate, and the mysterious #genidWhatever as the object – that mysterious resources is your collection of items.

Similarly <>; <>; means that is the nineth member of the items collection. is just a simplification so you don’t have to keep track and code etc.

The mysterious resource is what links your channel to your items. It’s why us RDF lot want it to stay there.

BTW. I can stick HTML into this thing, have you checked this for safety against XSS attacks?

By: Phil Ringnalda


Okay, I think I’ve got it: items is a class, genid#1 is an instance of items, and the value of genid#1->9 is entry 2295. And since my parser doesn’t know from the last time it parsed the same feed, for each item I need to check my db to see if I’ve seen it before, and for items I haven’t seen assign my own sequence numbers based on their sequence in the RDF. Even I should be able to do that, after a little thrashing.

Still not sure what I’ll be able to point to and say ”see: that’s why I need RDF”, unless it will somehow let me figure out that since A uses email address B with homepage C and D uses email address B with homepage F, that A & D are probably the same person, with homepages at C and F.

XSS? I did do some work on tightening up the way it handles the email/homepage link to prevent XSS attacks for people who don’t allow HTML in their comment bodies, but my feeling is that since new comments are immediately emailed to me as plain text, and since I’m the only one with a cookie worth stealing, as long as I take a look at the HTML in new comments from people I don’t know, I’m fairly safe. Possibly moderately, but I think fairly.

By: The Long Letter


Nobody’s going to understand this one…

…but every time I see one of the recent tech weblog posts about ”RDF in RSS” (which, to be honest, I barely understand myself), I keep thinking that RDF stands for Steve Jobs’ Reality Distortion Field:reality-distortion field n. An expression used to…