Elegant Frameworks for Web-based CRUD of RDF content?

Are there examples of tools or architectures that demonstrate support for the Model View Controller (MVC) paradigm for data entry directly against RDF content? It seems to be that there is an inherent impedance mismatch with that is needed for an efficient, documented-hosted, binding-oriented architecture for data entry and the amorphous nature of RDF as well as the cost of using RDF querying as a mechanism for binding data to UI elements. For some time, as a result, I've never expected there would ever be an elegant solution for round tripping raw RDF directly to and from a form. However, I'm curious if, over the years others have developed frameworks that have addressed this problem to the point where we can do with such a framework what XForms does with XML within XHTML?

The closest thing to that end I am aware of to what you describe is using web frameworks with an MVC-like (being MVC, Model-View-Template, or whatever is a topic of debate on its own) paradigm like Pylons, Django, TuboGears, repoze.bfg, Rails, etc. on top of an Object-RDF Mappers. Since I have yet to see a comprehensive list of comparison of Object-RDF Mappers, and have not tried all of them yet firsthand myself, I'll try to list some of them so you can look them up, separated by programming language. While some of them may still be actively developed, others may have stalled.




For another listing of Objcet-RDF Mappers, I also suggest taking a look at these pages in the semanticweb.org wiki.

Edit: Please also look at this somewhat related question and its answers, which might provide some insights towards a more direct use of RDF in web templates. This is different from the object mapping approach and might be more similiar to what you originally described in your question. For instance, XLST+SPARQL could be used to fill in the contents of a form with the results of a SPARQL query.

Our forthcoming product, Annex, does this: it's the Play! web framework integrated with RDF and SPARQL via Empire (our impl of JPA for RDF & SPARQL). Annex includes autogenerated CRUD forms for all RDF instances, faceted browsing, semantic search, OWL2 reasoning, etc.

TopBraid Suite is a fully RDF-based application deployment suite with full CRUD functionality. The TopBraid Ensemble Web-based application assembly toolkit uses a MVC architecture. Applications can be developed through the Adobe Flex API or using the SPARQL-based infrastructure to to create a customized API to to the TopBraid Live infrastructure, that includes a number of data import/export tools, RDFS/OWL/OWL 2 inferencing, SPARQL, and SPARQL-Based rule engines (SPIN). Text processing tools include JSP, XSLT and UISPIN to create full-featured Web applications driven by the RDF-based back end. For a quick look at application development features, I'd recommend the Topbraid Application Development Quickstart Guide, but there are other resources in the TopQuadrant Support pqge.

I answered a similar question a while back, which I've linked to below regarding SPARQL Server Pages, a web app development environment developed by Boeing for an internal project.


It fully supports MVC development, factorig out the control layer into it's own server side javascript source (see Apache Cocoon flowscript).

It's currently not released, but the more demand I can show for such a tool, the more chance I may have to convince management to let me invest the time to open source it.