Posts Tagged ‘Provenance’

W3C’s Semantic Web Activity Folds Into New Data Activity

rsz_w3clogoThe World Wide Web Consortium has headline news today: The Semantic Web, as well as eGovernment, Activities are being merged and superseded by the Data Activity, where Phil Archer serves as Lead.  Two new workgroups also have been chartered: CSV on the Web and Data on the Web Best Practices.

What’s driving this? First, Archer explains, the Semantic Web technology stack is now mature, and it’s time to allow those updated standards to be used. With RDF 1.1, the Linked Data Platform, SPARQL 1.1, RDB To RDF Mapping Language (R2RML), OWL 2, and Provenance all done or very close to it, it’s the right time “to take that very successful technology stack and try to implement it in the wider environment,” Archer says, rather than continue tinkering with the standards.

The second reason, he notes, is that a large community exists “that sees Linked Data, let alone the full Semantic Web, as an unnecessarily complicated technology. To many developers, data means JSON — anything else is a problem. During the Open Data on the Web workshop held in London in April, Open Knowledge Foundation co-founder and director Rufus Pollock said that if he suggested to the developers that they learn SPARQL he’d be laughed at – and he’s not alone.” Archer says. “We need to end the religious wars, where they exist, and try to make it easier to work with data in the format that people like to work in.”

The new CSV on the Web Working Group is an important step in that direction, following on the heels of efforts such as R2RML. It’s about providing metadata about CSV files, such as column headings, data types, and annotations, and, with it, making it easily possible to convert CSV into RDF (or other formats), easing data integration. “The working group will define a metadata vocabulary and then a protocol for how to link data to metadata (presumably using HTTP Link headers) or embed the metadata directly. Since the links between data and metadata can work in either direction, the data can come from an API that returns tabular data just as easily as it can a static file,” says Archer. “It doesn’t take much imagination to string together a tool chain that allows you to run SPARQL queries against ’5 Star Data’ that’s actually published as a CSV exported from a spreadsheet.”

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Read All About It: News Storyline Ontology Goes To Press

The News Storyline Ontology wants to make it easier for journalists to deal with the world as they understand it – that is,  in terms of stories and curated narrative arcs over world events. The ontology aims to be a generic model for describing and organizing the stories news organizations tell, while supporting whatever their approach is to handling those stories. It provides, in other words, a model for the news itself: how different stories relate to each other, how breaking news evolves and how the commonplace entities of people, places, organizations and events relate to news stories.

“The first benefit is for the news organization itself to organize things, but it also lets them put together web pages more flexibly and closer to the way we access information as humans,” says Jarred McGinnis, one of the authors of the ontology. Formerly head of research, semantic technologies at Press Association, he is now an independent consultant in semantics at his firm Logomachy Ltd. Fellow authors are Jeremy Tarling, BBC News data architect, and a former BBCer, Paul Wilton, previously technical lead, semantic publishing and now founder and technical architect at Ontoba, which specializes in semantic publishing.

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Semantic Tech Outlook: 2013

Photo Courtesy: Flickr/Lars Plougmann

In recent blogs we’ve discussed where semantic technologies have gone in 2012, and a bit about where they will go this year (see here, here and here).

Here are some final thoughts from our panel of semantic web experts on what to expect to see as the New Year rings in:

John Breslin,lecturer at NUI Galway, researcher and unit leader at DERI, creator of SIOC, and co-founder of Technology Voice and StreamGlider

Broader deployment of the schema.org terms is likely. In the study by Muehlisen and Bizer in July this year, we saw Open Graph Protocol, DC, FOAF, RSS, SIOC and Creative Commons still topping the ranks of top semantic vocabularies being used. In 2013 and beyond, I expect to see schema.org jump to the top of that list.

Christine Connors, Chief Ontologist, Knowledgent:

I think we will see an uptick in the job market for semantic technologists in the enterprise; primarily in the Fortune 2000. I expect to see some M&A activity as well from systems providers and integrators who recognize the desire to have a semantic component in their product suite. (No, I have no direct knowledge; it is my hunch!)

We will see increased competition from data analytics vendors who try to add RDF, OWL or graphstores to their existing platforms. I anticipate saying, at the end of 2013, that many of these immature deployments will leave some project teams disappointed. The mature vendors will need to put resources into sales and business development, with the right partners for consulting and systems integration, to be ready to respond to calls for proposals and assistance.

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Linked Data on the Web Workshop at WWW 2012

Juan Sequeda photoThis year was the 5th version of the Linked Data on the Web Workshop co-located at the World Wide Web Conference going on in Lyon, France.

At this workshop, seven issues caught my attention:

1) Media: Yunja Li presented on Synote: Weaving Media Fragments and Linked Data. This is interesting for those who not only want to link to an entire video, but want to link to a part of a video at a specific interval of time, and also add metadata information about that.

2) NLP to Linked Data: How can we relate the results of different named entity extraction tools to Linked Data. Giuseppe Rizzo introduced their project, NERD, which is working on this area.

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Report from Day 4 at ISWC

Juan Sequeda photo[Editor's Note: This week, Juan Sequeda is reporting in from the International Semantic Web Conference in Bonn, Germany. See his other reports here:
Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 ]

Day 4 of ISWC 2011 was the second full day of the conference and started out with a keynote from Frank van Harmelen, titled “10 Years of Semantic Web: does it work in theory?“  There were several sessions on RDF Querying of Multiple SourcesRDF Data AnalysisFormal Ontology & PatternsKnowledge Representation SemanticsWeb of DataMANCHustifications and Provenance, the In Use track on Environmental data, the Semantic Web Challenge and a very exciting Deathmatch panel.

The main question addressed in the keynote was if a decade of Semantic Web work has helped to discover any Computer Science laws? Frank stated that what has been built in the past 10 years can be characterized in 3 parts:
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