Posts Tagged ‘Sandro Hawke’

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Wide Web Consortium has headline news today: The Semantic Web, as well as eGovernment, Activities are being merged and superseded by the Data Activity, where Phil Archer serves as Lead.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.”

Read more

Late-Breaking Program Additions for Semantic Technology & Business Conference

The Semantic Technology & Business Conference begins in a few short days. If you haven’t registered yet, it’s not too late, and if you haven’t looked at the program recently, be sure to check out some of these exciting late-breaking additions…

Photo of Jason DouglasKEYNOTE:
What Google is Doing with Structured Data
Jason Douglas, Group Product Manager, Knowledge Graph, Google

Photos of Dan Brickley, R.V. Guha, Sandro HawkeHOT TOPIC PANEL:
WebSchemas: and Vocabulary Collaboration

Dan Brickley, Developer Advocate, Google
R.V. Guha, Google Fellow, Google
Sandro Hawke, W3C Technical Staff, W3C/MIT

(More panelists TBA)


Building Your SmartData Accelerator
Robert Kruse, Managing Partner, SmartDataAccelerator
Gene Mishchenko, Lead Information Architect, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services

Read more

Learn about at SemTechBiz Berlin

One of the more highly anticipated panels at next month’s Semantic Technology and Business Conference (#SemTechBiz) in Berlin, Germany, will be the closing keynote panel, – Where Are We Now. The panel will feature Peter Mika of Yahoo!, Sandro Hawke of the W3C, Dan Brickley of at Google, and our own Eric Franzon. The combined knowledge and breadth of experience of these semantic web experts will make this panel an unmissable event at SemTechBiz’s first Berlin-based conference.

Featured Session – Where Are We Now? with (left to right below) Eric Franzon, Peter Mika, Sandro Hawke, & Dan Brickley

photos of Eric Franzon, Peter Mika, Sandro Hawke, and Dan Brickley

Google, Yahoo!, Bing, and Yandex all rely on structured data markup in HTML pages to improve the display of search results, making it easier for people to find the right web pages. Last June, these search engines announced a joint initiative called is a shared markup vocabulary that webmasters can use to describe information in their pages in ways recognized by these major search providers. This panel will explore the current state of standards activities, tools, and implementations of with leaders from the effort and W3C. Read more

Recap of the W3C RDF F2F Meeting (and Other Acronyms)

The W3C’s Semantic Web Activity Lead, Ivan Herman, has provided a recap of the second RDF Face-to-Face (F2F) meeting: “Most of the two days’ meeting concentrated on ‘graph identification’, i.e., what is commonly called ‘named graphs’ by the community. This discussion at the F2F was the outcome of a long series of discussion on the group’s mailing list, started, essentially, right when the group began its work. There are many issues surrounding this loose notion of named graphs, including terminology, semantics, syntax; although the F2F meeting has not solved all the problems, significant advances were achieved.” Read more

Semantic Web – Pitch of the week

Last week, put out a challenge to our readership to answer the questrion, “What is the Semantic Web?” in the form of a 90-second elevator pitch.  Read the original challenge and watch the video here.

This week, we are pleased to feature this entry from Sandro Hawke of the World Wide Web Consortium.  It’s a good one, and Sandro gets extra points for actually shooting his video in an elevator (at MIT’s Stata Center, no less)! 

What is the Semantic Web? (for a general, non-technical audience)

Shortly after we published the initial request for pitches, Sandro reached out asking if a better question might not be, “What is the Semantic Web good for?” addressing the value proposition.  It’s a good point, and I expect that many pitches will answer this question as well.  Certainly, if you feel that’s a stronger angle, feel free to pitch accordingly.

As Sandro’s video shows, a pitch doesn’t have to be complicated.  In fact, it should not be.  It does not need to explain the many nuances of semantic technology.  The main goal of these pitches should be to grab a listener’s interest such that the listener says, “Tell me more.”

So, Semantic Web community, “Tell me more!” keep those pitches coming!

See how to submit your own pitch here.

–Eric Franzon
VP Community

RuleML Conference to feature RIF

The new W3C Rule Interchange Format (W3C RIF) standard will be featured at RuleML 2009 (see, co-located with the Business Rules Forum in November 2009 in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. There will be a tutorial about RIF by Christian de Sainte Marie (ILOG/IBM, co-chair of the RIF WG) and a keynote by Sandro Hawke (W3C staff representative on the RIF WG) "Bringing Order to Chaos: RIF as the New Standard for Rule Interchange".

RIF will also be a topic at the RuleML/Business Rules Forum lunch panel on Web rule standards, and in the Business Rules standards session and Open Source Day. Implementations of RIF will be demonstrated in the 3rd Int. Rule Challenge at RuleML-2009, which has an open call for demonstrations/case studies/benchmarks/best practice reports and is explicitly calling for demonstrations of W3C RIF implementations. First demos on RIF by IBM, Oracle, ILog, have been presented last year in the 2nd Rules Challenge at RuleML-2008 and are available on the growing demo pool of the RuleML Rule Challenge website.