Challenges in RDF validation


The RDF data model forms a cornerstone of the Semantic Web technology stack. Although there have been different proposals for RDF serialization syntaxes, the underlying simple data model enables great flexibility which allows it to be successfully employed in many different scenarios and to form the basis on which other technologies are developed. In order to apply an RDF-based approach in practice it is necessary to communicate the structure of the data that is being stored or represented. Data quality is of paramount importance for the acceptance of RDF as a data representation language and it must be enabled by the use of tools that can check if some data conforms to some specific structure. There have been several recent proposals for RDF validation languages like ShEx and SHACL. In this chapter, we describe both proposals and enumerate some challenges and trends that we foresee with regards to RDF validation. We devote more space to what we consider one of the main challenges, which is to compare ShEx and SHACL and to understand their underlying foundations. To that end, we propose an intermediate language and show how ShEx and SHACL can be converted to it.

Current Trends in Semantic Web Technologies: Theory and Practice