What I’ve been working on: m-ld, RDF, and “Web Zero”

March 02, 2023

For the past couple of years, my passion has been…what do we call it now? Linked Data? RDF? Is “Semantic Web” too out of date these days? Whatever the words, I caught the bug a while back and it hasn’t let me go. Graphs of entities with globally-unique names mean that you can say whatever you have to say about whatever you need to say it about, and that statement can potentially get to a place where it’s useful. The walls between the gardens of our applications can fall. You can put a calendar event in your outliner and a Trello card in an email. It’s a whole new world.

But it’s still all so vague that it feels a lot like telling someone about a recurring dream. No one wants to hear about that.

So for now, let me tell you what I’ve actually been working on. About a month ago, I joined the folks working on m-ld to work on a few projects, and right now we’re working out something we call “Web Zero”.

What if every web page came with an RDF dataset? What if semantic web pages, but at runtime? What if the entire state of a web app could be saved and run elsewhere? What if designers could poke real pages and design over real data, all offline?

To be super clear, it’s currently just an idea and a grant proposal. But if you’d like to see what I’ve written up to sell the dream, have a look!

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Some thoughts from Petra Jaros.