Actually, since this discussion turned to general query language functionality, I want to voice another question I had some time ago - why not to go standards way with complex cases? In two words, let's leave #ask language for simple cases and current uses and employ SPARQL or other standard languages to query the dataset, plus it'll allow to use separate tools for that, e.g. that RAP instance that SMW started to integrate with, second, it'll allow to use external sources as well.

I have a feeling that building querying functionality into SMW is a dead end as it's limited by so many factors and it's better to integrate external querying with ASKs presentation layer.

Hope this makes some sense, please advise.

Thank you,

       Sergey


On Sun, Jun 8, 2008 at 9:45 AM, Markus Krötzsch <markus@semantic-mediawiki.org> wrote:
On Freitag, 6. Juni 2008, Sergey Chernyshev wrote:
> Can I suggest to use '->' instead of dots - this will make it much less
> probable to have in Property names, but still reasonable as syntax.

I though about that one too, but I was not sure if it is preferred
internationally. Would the right-to-left languages be OK with that too (it
would of course be right-to-left as well, but still)? Do you think there
could ever be name clashes on "."? (Is there anyone who ever used a "."
within a property name?) I can do both ... whatever most users prefer.

Here is again the new proposal in comparison to the old one:

{{#ask: [[works at->located in->population::>1000000]] }}

Old:

{{#ask: [[works at.located in.population::>1000000]] }}

(Personally, I find the old slightly more readable, maybe because the . is
smaller and just one symbol).

-- Markus

>
> On Fri, Jun 6, 2008 at 6:02 AM, Markus Krötzsch <
>
> markus@semantic-mediawiki.org> wrote:
> > Hi all,
> >
> > I have a proposal for a simplification in #ask query syntax that I would
> > like
> > to get some feedback on.
> >
> > If you currently ask for property chains, you need something like the
> > following:
> >
> > {{#ask: [[works at::<q>[[located
> > in::<q>[[population::>1000000]]</q>]]</q>]]}}
> >
> > to find someone working at an organisation located in a place with more
> > than
> > 1000000 inhabitants. The many [[ and <q> are sure annoying.
> >
> > My proposal is to instead allow writing
> >
> > {{#ask: [[works at.located in.population::>1000000]] }}
> >
> > with exactly the same interpretation as above.
> >
> > Effects:
> > * "." in property names become problematic (though some escape can be
> > provided
> > to allow them),
> > * the syntax becomes shorter, and maybe also more readable.
> >
> > Would that be an improvement? Other comments? (There is also another
> > issue regarding the syntax with <q>, but I will have to check what can be
> > done there before proposing alternatives.)
> >
> > Cheers
> >
> > Markus
> >
> > --
> > Markus Krötzsch
> > Semantic MediaWiki    http://semantic-mediawiki.org
> > http://korrekt.org    markus@semantic-mediawiki.org
> >
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--
Markus Krötzsch
Semantic MediaWiki    http://semantic-mediawiki.org
http://korrekt.org    markus@semantic-mediawiki.org

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