[uf-discuss] How to avoid building erroneous social network graphs?

Ben Ward lists at ben-ward.co.uk
Wed Mar 26 16:19:55 PST 2008

On 26 Mar 2008, at 19:32, Costello, Roger L. wrote:
> <p>Hi Alice.  Nice page.  I would like to introduce you to my  
> friend <a
> href="Sally.html" rel="friend">Sally</a> some time.</p>
> Notice the use of XFN: >> rel="friend" <<
> When a robot application encounters Alice's web page it will see the
> representative hCard for Alice and it will see the XFN-bearing link.
> Here's the relationship that the robot constructs:
>    Alice is friends with Sally
> But that's completely wrong.  Bob stated the relationship.  The  
> correct
> relationship is:
>    Bob is friends with Sally
> How would a robot avoid this error?

The situation you describe there is a publishing problem. If you're  
graphing social relationships, then the page you're describing has  
been linked to with rel="me", even though the content of the page is  
authored by multiple people. A page where other authors can add rel  
links is unsuitable for use as rel="me" node — except where the  
content management system disallows the rel/rev attribute, or XFN  
values thereof.

There's no way for a robot to avoid that parsing error.


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