I feel a bit enthusiastic. I´ve just explored dbpedia using it´s comfortable search functionality. And I feel somehow a bit released. What I´ve seen is a great application of semantic web technologies!
FOAF Files become more and more widespread… Like years ago, when people started to ask “Do have an email?”, now the question comes up “Do you have a FOAF File?”. Well, actually people should ask “Do you have a URI?”, but this discussion seems to be only the next step …
Quite interesting is the fact, that people with FOAF Files obviously don´t have a weblog quite often and vice versa. So, do you have both?
A comprehensive overview how your life will change as soon as you´re FOAFed gives Danny Ayers.
One more reason to buy an Apple is Pathway: This program helps to navigate through Wikipedia in a bit more structured way. It visualises pathways through wikipedia and proposes interesting links to other wiki pages. After a while navigating through wikipedia users normally find themselves “totally lost in myriads of loosely related pages. What I needed, was an application that could easily archive the path I follow through Wikipedia pages”, says the author of Pathway.
Thanks to Thomas Fundneider for pointing that out!
If you try to explain what the Semantic Web is all about, it always comes to things like “you will find things better in the semantic web…”. But what exactly is it, what you´ll find better?
To my opinion it´s all about relationships – and that´s exactly, what transforms information into knowledge: To know, how things belong together. It sounds trivial, but it´s still not that clear:
Semantic Web is about Knowledge relationship discovery.
A really great example for that was recently published by Sören Auer, Jens Lehmann, Chris Bizer and others:
A short overview for CEOs who want to start a semantic web related project can be found at BusinessWeek. This comprehensive tipsheet mentions for example that you shouldn´t forget your employee´s privacy when you start a semweb project: “Just because you can gather and correlate data about employees doesn’t mean you should. Set usage guidelines to safeguard employee privacy.”
This demonstrates one more time that the semantic web is not only about technology…
Semantic Wikipedia Query is based on dbpedia.org, which is a community effort to extract structured information from Wikipedia (~ 91. mio. triples) and to make this information available on the Web. It allows you to ask sophisticated queries against Wikipedia and to link other datasets on the Web to Wikipedia data.
This project shows why the semantic web won´t fail: In contrast to simple queries against full-text indices, semantic queries (similar like SQL-based database-queries) allow queries like “show me all projects we´ve done in Russia the last 10 years”. Semantic Queries in the Semantic Web can be realised deploying SPARQL-endpoints and are one of main advantages semantic wikis have compared to classic wikis.
Another great benefit when all the information on the web is “tripled down” comes up, when meshups (with geo-information or foaf-profiles) are realised.
Also try out dbpedia search!
It´s not out there yet, but Tassilo Pellegrini and I are working currently on a new compendium in that field. Since Springer has published a book on the “Semantic Web” in 2006 (thanks to all the authors again!) we were working on a new concept for a book which reflects converging developments around web 2.0 and the semantic web.
Now we have started to invite experts (bloggers, scientists, practitioners) who could contribute articles on questions like
- What kind of business needs do we address with social semantic web applications?
- How can we realize semantic mesh-ups?
- Where can we apply semantic wikis?
- How could a system architecture look like for a corporate social semantic web (cssw)?
- How can we reorganize folksonomies with semantic technologies? How can we realize dynamic ontologies?
One exciting detail in this process (the book will be published at beginning of 2008) will be the use of a semantic wiki which will help to co-ordinate this collaborative process (around 20 authors will contribute to this compendium).