- define our entities
- use data wherever possible, not text
- use identifiers for things
- relate attributes to entities (that is, say things about some thing)
- use a mainstream serialization
Should we do this, the mainstream serialization could be anything from JSON to XML to RDF. In fact, it could be all of those if we play our cards right and define our data in a format neutral way. RDA does some of this for us, but not all. In particular, RDA does not distinguish between data and text, and although it allows for the use of identifiers it doesn't give any guidance on how to use them. RDA is probably fine as guidance rules for decision-making, but it needs the corresponding data definition before it becomes useful. Having that data definition could help to clarify some ambiguities in RDA. We have to expect that there will need to be some iteration between RDA and a data definition. (I will post shortly on a problem that I have run into.)
It also seems to me that we have everything to gain by beginning our work on a data format with no particular serialization in mind. We could go from RDA to RDA-as-data and then on to RDA-as-RDF. I see some dangers in skipping the middle step, mainly that we could end up making some decisions that fit RDA into RDF but that are problematic for other serializations.