Daniel Lemire's blog

, 2 min read

FOAF going nowhere?

2 thoughts on “FOAF going nowhere?”

  1. Julian Bond says:

    Two problems here I think.

    1) As you’ve highlighted, FOAF is a write only format. There’s tons of FOAF out there, but a shortage of lightweight tools to do something with it. And the sheer quantity means that writing a generalised scutter is hard.

    2) It’s an awkward and incomplete format to work with once you extract the data. I find it amazing that we still don’t have a decent standard for describing people. vCard is equally flawed both in the standard and in support.

    If you want to try and take this further my own humble attempt at a FOAF PHP library can be found here.

    The big requirement that’s still unfulfilled isrelated to single signon It’s a way of grabbing profile data from one place and using it in another.

  2. Kunal says:

    Daniel, cheers for the link! In fact I got more interested about FoaF off of your blog (almost a year or so ago), around the time when I was working on a FoaF parser in ColdFusion.

    For the movement to catch on, developers need to write something like Feedparser for Python – basically a comprehensive parser for using FoaF files. This would solve the issue that Julian is addressing in his first point.

    We should also talk about collaborative filtering sometime. I’ve dabbled a bit with slope-one for some small projects and found success with it (probably one of the better methods that can scale).