[whatwg] RDFa Features

Manu Sporny msporny at digitalbazaar.com
Thu Aug 28 21:57:37 PDT 2008

Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
> On Thu, Aug 28, 2008 at 4:42 PM, Kristof Zelechovski
> <giecrilj at stegny.2a.pl <mailto:giecrilj at stegny.2a.pl>> wrote:
>     Ian's question was about what happens when it goes down forever, or gets
>     taken over, intercepted, squatted, spoofed or redirected because of a
>     malicious DNS.  I should have known better how to ask it.  The
>     browser cache cannot handle these cases.
> Consider the question to be asked by me as well.  A host of a popular
> format forgets to maintain its registration and gets squatted by a
> malicious person. They pick up another url to host their schema on, but
> legacy pages are still pointing to the old url and now may have poisoned
> semantics.  Do we have a recourse?

The way we deal with this today is by using a Persistent URL (aka: URL
re-direction service) such as purl.org[1] or xmlns.com[2]. We recommend
that all authors use such a service for their vocabularies. This is how
the Media, Audio, Video and Commerce RDF vocabularies are hosted.

A URL re-direction service handles the case of if the service end-point
gets hacked, lost, taken down temporarily, DNS entry changed, or messed
with in any way. If any of the above happens, and you lose the original
URL forever, you can post the vocabulary somewhere else on the web and
change the entry in the re-direction service to point to the new
location of the vocabulary.

It's a fairly simple protection mechanism that is commonly used against
the doomsday scenarios that each of you have outlined. You can also do a
variety of other things on the client side, as Ben has pointed out.

-- manu

[1] http://purl.org/
[2] http://xmlns.com/

Manu Sporny
President/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
blog: Bitmunk 3.0 Website Launches

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