Linked Data 2014: My expectations for the New Year

2014 is only a couple of days old. I have some expectations and visions for the new year with regards to linked data and its next evolution steps.

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  • Smart data will receive a lot of attention: big data is the wave on which this certain topic surfs.
  • Trust and provenance of data has been discussed for a while and has been mentioned frequently to be an important step for linked data to be accepted especially by enterprises. W3C’s PROV ontology was just a first step towards this direction. More specifications and implementations will follow this year.
  • Automatic quality-checks for several types of linked data will become a matter of course (similar to test automation in software testing). One example is qSKOS which is provided as a web service for all people interested in controlled vocabularies like taxonomies or thesauri.
  • The LOD cloud as we know it won’t be updated anymore: the periodical updates of the LOD cloud won’t happen anymore in 2014. The image would be much too big. Instead, several domains will generate their own LOD clouds, each of them with a couple of central hubs in the middle (see also: The LOD cloud is dead, long live the trusted LOD cloud). Those sub-hubs connected will represent the overall LOD cloud in the future. DBpedia will remain in the centre.
  • Traditional database vendors will embrace RDF and SPARQL: MarkLogic Semantics and IBM’s DB2-RDF is just the beginning. It will be hard for them to deliver scalability and performance as good as ‘traditional’ RDF database providers like OpenLink Software or Ontotext can do.
  • Linked Data “Killer applications” will be established: Automatic linking of structured and unstructured information based on RDF could become a killer application for Linked Data technologies. Take a look at two example applications in the areas of medicine and clean energy which make use of this principle: true semantic search will become possible (the two demos wont’t work properly behind the firewall due to some software libraries used by it).
  • The year of semantic web standards: The Open Government Data movement will finally arrive at the point where standards based technologies like linked data become the obvious solution to the more or less chaotic collections of open data which have been accumulated in recent years.
  • Enterprise Linked Data: More and more integrations of linked data technologies like Semantic SP into enterprise platforms like SharePoint will be available as products on the software market.
  • SEMANTICS 2014 will take place in September in Germany and will be a great event. More to come soon.
  • ISWC 2014 will take place in October at beautiful Lake Garda (Italy) and will be a great event, too.
  • I am looking forward to meeting some of you once again, and also to meet some new linked data aficionados!!

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