This document provides the reader with a summary of changes to RDF introduced in RDF version 1.2.

This document is intended to provide the reader with a summary of changes to RDF introduced in RDF version 1.2.


This document is informative in nature. Its purpose is to provide a summary of differences between RDF versions 1.1 and 1.2 and to introduce new additions in a very brief manner.

Readers new to RDF should start with the [[[RDF12-PRIMER]]] [[RDF12-PRIMER]] and then move on to the specifications in which they are most interested. This document is meant to serve as a guide for those already familiar with RDF 1.1 who wish to understand changes in version 1.2.

Normative specifications of RDF can be found in the following documents:

The following prefixes are used in this document:

Prefixes and IRIs
Namespace prefixNamespace IRIRDF vocabulary
rdf The RDF built-in vocabulary [[RDF12-SCHEMA]]
xsd The RDF-compatible XML Schema datatypes

Abstract Syntax

New Serialization Formats

RDF 1.1 introduces a number of new serialization formats. RDF 1.1 Concepts and Abstract Syntax makes it clear that RDF/XML is no longer the only recommended serialization format; RDF itself should be considered to be the data model (the abstract syntax), not any particular serialization.

RDF 1.0 and 1.1 serialization formats


Most of the changes between RDF and RDF 1.1 do not have any effect on implementations of entailment.

Datatype entailment formally refers to a set of 'recognized' datatypes, replacing datatype maps in RDF 1.0 Semantics, but this does not have any effect on implementation.

Datatype entailment formally refers to a set of 'recognized' datatype IRIs. The RDF 1.0 Semantics used the concept of a datatype map: in the new semantic description, this is the mapping from recognized IRIs to the datatypes they identify. This change does not have any effect on implementation or semantic entailments.

RDF entailment has two required datatypes xsd:string and rdf:langString which must be recognized, but this doesn't appreciably add to RDF entailment as these two datatypes replace plain literals.

One change that does affect entailment is that graphs containing invalid literals (e.g., "a"^^xsd:integer) are immediately inconsistent for recognized datatypes, even in sub-RDFS entailment regimes.

RDF 1.1 includes RDF Datasets. However, the semantics of RDF Datasets in RDF 1.1 is minimal and entailment per se is only defined on RDF graphs so there are no changes here.


Acknowledgments for RDF 1.1

The editor gratefully acknowledges the members of the RDF Working Group who contributed to this document, including Richard Cyganiak, Gavin Garothers, Pat Hayes, Sandro Hawke, Gregg Kellogg, Markus Lanthaler, Peter Patel-Schneider, Eric Prud-hommeaux, Guus Schreiber and Manu Sporny.

The membership of the RDF Working Group included Thomas Baker, Scott Bauer, Dan Brickley, Gavin Carothers, Pierre-Antoine Champin, Olivier Corby, Richard Cyganiak, Souripriya Das, Ian Davis, Lee Feigenbaum, Fabien Gandon, Charles Greer, Alex Hall, Steve Harris, Sandro Hawke, Pat Hayes, Ivan Herman, Nicholas Humfrey, Kingsley Idehen, Gregg Kellogg, Markus Lanthaler, Arnaud Le Hors, Peter F. Patel-Schneider, Eric Prud'hommeaux, Yves Raimond, Nathan Rixham, Guus Schreiber, Andy Seaborne, Manu Sporny, Thomas Steiner, Ted Thibodeau, Mischa Tuffield, William Waites, Jan Wielemaker, David Wood, Zhe Wu, and Antoine Zimmermann.

Acknowledgments for RDF 1.2

In addition to the editors, the following people have contributed to this specification:

Recognize members of the Task Force? Not an easy to find list of contributors.