Posts Tagged ‘linked data’

FLAX a Winner on the World’s Technology Stage

flax29 October, 2014 — Software designed at the University of Waikato and used all around the world has won a major international competition.

FLAX, which stands for Flexible Learning Acquisition, has taken first place at the Linked Vici Competition, held to acknowledge development in open and linked data for educational purposes.

The win was announced at the 13th International Semantic Web Conference, in Riva del Garda, Italy, with FLAX taking first place from 10 shortlisted candidates. Read more

Metreeca Offers Easier Interaction With Semantic Knowledge Bases

griverAccessing an enterprise’s semantic knowledge base has its challenges for the business’ general population. Perhaps development teams already have integrated specific SPARQL queries inside a customer app or custom dashboard or otherwise accommodated some very task-oriented activities and searches, but that has its limits for non-technical users who want to explore outside the box. All the same, these users aren’t likely to write new SPARQL queries on their own — but nor do they necessarily want to wait for their IT departments to pull that together for them. Interactive query builders are options but some may find these still a little too-technically oriented.

This is a problem that Metreeca is looking to solve with Graph Rover, a self-service search and analysis tool that enables non technical users to interact visually with semantic knowledge bases. It has just released the latest beta update of the product, which lets users build queries using a graphical interface, but Graph Rover has been in development for two years while the company was in stealth mode, and tech lead Alessandro Bollini says it is already a mature solution that should be available commercially in the first quarter of 2015.

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Linked Data LEAPS To More Sustainable Energy Sources

leapspixAt the IESD14 (Intelligent Exploration of Semantic Data) challenge at this week’s ISWC 2014, the award was handed out to LEAPS: A Semantic Web and Linked Data Framework for the Algal Biomass Domain. The application is the work of Monika Solanki, while at the Knowledge-Based Engineering Lab at Birmingham City University in the UK.

The motivation, according to slides about the project, relates to the idea that algae biomass-based biofuels could serve as a naturally viable and sustainable energy source alternative to fossil fuels. While many companies, governments and non-profit agencies have been researching the idea, knowledge gathered exists in diverse formats and proprietary databases. What’s lacking has been a knowledge level infrastructure that is equipped with the capabilities to provide semantic grounding to the datasets for algal biomass, the slides note.

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Web Payments Interest Group Takes Flight

w3cdomainThe World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has launched an initiative to integrate payments seamlessly into the Open Web Platform, the collection of open technologies such as HTML, HTTP, and various APIs that enable the Web. It’s asking for industry stakeholders, such as banks, credit card companies, governments and others, to join the new Web Payments Interest Group, chaired by Erik Anderson (Bloomberg) and David Ezell (Association for Convenience & Fuel Retailing), to help deepen understanding of challenges and how to meet them with the appropriate solutions to move e-commerce forward, including on mobile devices.

The Interest Group’s goals include improving usability across devices and reducing the risk of fraud, as well as creating new opportunities for businesses and consumers in areas such as coupons and loyalty programs and crypto-currencies. On its agenda is creating a Web Payments Roadmap, determining Web Payments terminology, dealing with payment transaction messaging and identity, authentication and security. As part of its work, the new group is charged with creating a framework to ensure that Web applications can interface in standard ways with all current and future payment methods, and will encompass the full range of devices people use for online payments.

First up, the W3C says, is a focus on digital wallets, “which many in industry consider an effective way to reduce fraud and improve privacy by having users share sensitive information only with payment providers, rather than merchants,” according to the release. “In addition, wallets can simplify transactions from mobile devices and make it easier to integrate new payment innovations.”

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New World War I Encyclopedia Relies on Semantic MediaWiki

19141918onlineHeritage Daily recently reported, “A comprehensive, English-language, open access encyclopedia of what was deemed the ‘Great War’ was introduced and released on Wednesday 8th October, in Brussels. The project ‘1914-1918-online. International Encyclopedia of the First World War’ is managed by researchers at Freie Universität Berlin in cooperation with the Bavarian State Library. It is funded by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG). The encyclopaedia combines the latest historical research with the many advantages of the Semantic Web. The content was written and compiled by 1,000 experts from 54 countries, and is continuously being updated and expanded.” The encyclopedia can be accessed here. Read more

NSF Awards $15M to DataONE Environmental Linked Data Project

dataoneMary Martialay of RPI News reports, “The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded $15 million to a team of environmental and earth science data researchers, including researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, who are providing tools and infrastructure that improve access to vast amounts of scientific data. As part of the project, Rensselaer will provide semantic technology leadership to help improve scientific discovery, said Deborah McGuinness, director of the Rensselaer Web Science Center,  and Tetherless World Senior Constellation Chair and professor of computer science and cognitive science at Rensselaer.” Read more

Bringing the Semantic Web to the World of Grant Management

1535960661_80f6d8efb7Jay Shah of Federal Times recently wrote, “In January 2014 a survey of more than 200 nonprofit and public-sector professionals found that three out of every four grant-seeking organizations is dependent on federal funds. With competition this fierce, federal grant managers are tasked with a heavy evaluation load. At the same time, Semantic Web and linked-data technologies are changing the way we access and interact with complex data environments, allowing for faster, more cost-efficient analysis and a shorter road to discovering substantive correlations.” Read more

Bringing the Power of the Cloud to Research Libraries

5810163712_ac8a7f249e_zResearch Information recently wrote, “There are several potential benefits to libraries of using cloud-based resources and services. These include increased efficiencies, opportunities for collaboration, decreased need for in-house technical expertise, cost savings, and more timely access to the latest IT functionality. The cloud also promises improved workflow, automated software updates, redundancy, and back-ups. ‘Libraries have a real need for efficiency in processing operations, notably combining maintenance of print and electronic content in a single set of workflows,’ said [Jane] Burke [VP of Market Development at ProQuest]. ‘The new model systems offer unified workflows for all types of content within a single solution.  They also offer the platform to provide qualitative benefits, such as a centralised knowledgebase.  A robust knowledgebase is critical to delivering unified collection management.’” Read more

It’s Time for Developers to Take Linked Data Seriously

9965173654_7bf862d89d_nCandice McMillan of Programmable Web reports, “If you aren’t familiar with linked data or the Semantic Web, it’s probably a good time to get better acquainted with the concepts, as it seems to be a popular theme that is rippling through the Web development world, with promises of exciting possibilities. At this year’s APIcon in London, Markus Lanthaler, inventor of Hydra and one of the core designers of JSON-LD, talked about the importance of optimizing data architecture for an integrated future, focusing on linked data as a promising solution.” 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

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