The Semantic Web’s Rocking, And There Ain’t No Stopping It Now

archerMake no mistake about it: The semantic web has been a success and that’s not about to stop now. That was essentially the message delivered by W3C Data Activity Lead Phil Archer, during his keynote address celebrating the semantic web’s ten years of achievement at last month’s Semantic Technology & Business Conference in San Jose.

After acknowledging that he’s heard it all about the semantic web being a failure, about it being rebranded as Linked Data and that being a failure too, he summed up those impressions in one distinctly British word: “Bollocks.” The list of successes ranged across the spectrum, from the use in federated data portals of the Data Catalog Vocabulary from the W3C’s Government Linked Data Working Group, to the 47-million triples strong Open Phacts pharmacology discovery platform, to all the job postings that come up on The Semantic Web Blog – including one recently for the J. Craig Venter Institute, named for the pioneer genomic researcher who sequenced the human genome, which is looking for a bioinformatics analyst with OWL expertise in his or her resume.

That’s just a taste of the many citations he offered of the semantic web’s successes to date, not least among them his own strong familiarity with Linked Data’s use in government, where the technologies, he said, are used “to make our government more efficient” by having one organization make an authoritative data set the others can link to to support data-sharing across agencies. (For the full view into Archer’s take on the semantic web’s successes, you can view the entire keynote here.)

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Semantic Web Jobs: Concurrent Technologies

ctcConcurrent is looking for a Data Developer/Analyst in Washington DC. The post states, “At Concurrent Technologies Corporation (CTC), we’re committed to assisting government, industry and nonprofit organizations achieve world-class competitiveness. In carrying out that mission, we recognize that our employees are our most important asset. Our organization has been recognized continually as an exceptional place to work. Visit us online at www.ctc.com for more information… Primary Responsibilities: Concurrent Technologies Corporation (www.ctc.com) is seeking a full time Data Developer/Analyst. CTC uses the latest technologies to design state-of-the art IT systems for a variety of clients.” Read more

The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography Turns Ten

odnbDavid Hill Radcliffe of the OUPblog recently wrote, “The publication of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography in September 2004 was a milestone in the history of scholarship, not least for crossing from print to digital publication. Prior to this moment a small army of biographers, myself among them, had worked almost entirely from paper sources, including the stately volumes of the first, Victorian ‘DNB’ and its 20th-century print supplement volumes. But the Oxford DNB of 2004 was conceived from the outset as a database and published online as web pages, not paper pages reproduced in facsimile. In doing away with the page image as a means of structuring digital information, the online ODNB made an important step which scholarly monographs and articles might do well to emulate.” Read more

FirstRain Launches New API for Predictive Analytics in Enterprise Apps

First-RainJanet Wagner of Programmable Web reports, “FirstRain, a personal business analytics platform provider, has announced the launch of a FirstRain API that allows enterprise developers to incorporate FirstRain platform functionality into third-party applications and systems. The new FirstRain API provides programmatic access to real-time data from the proprietary FirstRain business graph, which the company says ‘extracts the deep, interconnected relationships between companies, businesses and markets’.” Read more

Turn Your Text Analytics Findings Into Story-Telling Visualizations

SA ChartOnce the complicated job of analyzing text is done, well, it’s not. The next step is to share the findings with others – marketers, sales and additional business personnel who are experts in their domain but not necessarily in text analytics themselves. How to turn that analysis into pictures that can be worth a thousand words?

Visualizing text analytics results is what ChartExpo is all about. Shahbaz Anwar, who is CEO of text analytics vendor PolyVista (see coverage here), is also behind the new visualization library, which was built for PolyVista’s use but now is available for others to leverage. Anwar says that many of the typical, garden-variety visualization tools out there aren’t a good fit for showcasing text and survey analytics results, so the decision was made to leverage the D3.JS framework to build its own libraries upon, which others can now license for use.

“Really what we’re after is how to tell your story with one visualization,” Anwar says.

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Semantic Web Jobs: Orbis Technologies

Orbis is looking for a Software Developer – Cloud anOrbisd Big Data in Annapolis, MD. The post states, “Join a team oriented environment, participate in Scrum meetings, drive and execute technical various project phases from development through implementation of advanced web technology solutions for commercial and government clients. Many projects include integration of Open Source software with developed web services to create custom solutions for our clients. Develop high quality software designs and programs for customized customer solutions using Java. Use Agile/SCRUM methodologies and help implement semantic web technologies (OWL, RDF).” Read more

GitHub Adds schema.org Actions to Email Notifications via JSON-LD

GitHub logoStéphane Corlosquet has noticed that GitHub has added schema.org Actions using the JSON-LD syntax to the notification emails that GitHub users receive.

On Twitter, Corlosquet posted:

Tweet from @scolorquet: "Looks like @github just started to use http://schema.org  actions with JSON-LD in their notifications emails! "

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Upcoming Hackathon at Cornell Showcases Smart Search

cornellDebra Eichten of the Cornell Chronicle recently wrote, “At the Big Red//Hacks event Sept. 26-28 – billed as the first student-run, large-scale hackathon at Cornell University – participants will have access to a semantic intelligence application program interfaceAPI, the core technology for a new startup, Speare.  Speare founder and CEO Rahul Shah ’16 said his passion for understanding information, coupled with meeting students who shared an interest in entrepreneurship, resulted in the creation of Speare – a startup business that harnesses semantic intelligence to understand the meaning of textual information.” Read more

IBM’s New Watson Analytics Hopes to Bring Big Data to the Rest of Us

WatsonRon Miller of TechCrunch reports, “IBM today announced a new product called Watson Analytics, one they claim will bring sophisticated big data analysis to the average business user. Watson Analytics is a cloud application that does all of the the heavy lifting related to big data processing by retrieving the data, analyzing it, cleaning it, building sophisticated visualizations and offering an environment for communicating and collaborating around the data. And lest you think that IBM is just slapping on the Watson label because it’s a well known brand (as I did), Eric Sall, vp of worldwide marketing for business analytics at IBM  says that’s the not the case. The technology underlying the product including the ability to process natural language queries is built on Watson technology.” Read more

Forging Ahead in the New AI Economy

"Forge Ahead" photo of arrow on pavementWe are seeing the beginning of the new artificial intelligence economy. This has many parallels to the infrastructure-as-a-service wave led by Amazon Web Services (AWS), which provided the world with access to highly-scalable compute capacity. AI technologies are being exposed as core infrastructure via the cloud, enabling companies to build smarter applications and services.

If you think you aren’t already a part of the AI economy, think again. Most of us are already participating through our interaction with popular applications and services. For example, Google Maps uses AI technology to better understand Street View images to give more accurate directions; and both Siri and Google Now use a combination of speech recognition, language understanding, and predictive modeling to act as digital personal assistants.

So the big question is: why now? Historically, AI technologies have been limited by a lack of data, insufficient compute capability, and poor algorithms. We’re now witnessing the convergence of three major forces: ready access to massive data, highly scalable on-demand compute capability, and a number of core algorithmic breakthroughs that enable us to better train robust AI systems. This is a perfect storm that has resulted in significant advances in computers’ ability to understand text, images, video, and speech. Read more

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