RDF is a flexible and extensible way to represent information about World Wide Web resources. It is used to represent, among other things, personal information, social networks, metadata about digital artifacts, as well as provide a means of integration over disparate sources of information. A standardized query language for RDF data with multiple implementations offers developers and end users a way to write and to consume the results of queries across this wide range of information. Used with a common protocol, applications can access and combine information from across the Web.
This document describes the query language part of the SPARQL Protocol And RDF Query Language for easy access to RDF stores. It is designed to meet the requirements and design objectives described in RDF Data Access Use Cases and Requirements [UCNR]. The SPARQL query language consists of the syntax and semantics for asking and answering queries against RDF graphs. SPARQL contains capabilities for querying by triple patterns, conjunctions, disjunctions, and optional patterns. It also supports constraining queries by source RDF graph and extensible value testing. Results of SPARQL queries can be ordered, limited and offset in number, and presented in several different forms.