Posts Tagged ‘SPIN’

The Web Is 25 — And The Semantic Web Has Been An Important Part Of It

web25NOTE: This post was updated at 5:40pm ET.

Today the Web celebrates its 25th birthday, and we celebrate the Semantic Web’s role in that milestone. And what a milestone it is: As of this month, the Indexed Web contains at least 2.31 billion pages, according to WorldWideWebSize.  

The Semantic Web Blog reached out to the World Wide Web Consortium’s current and former semantic leads to get their perspective on the roads The Semantic Web has traveled and the value it has so far brought to the Web’s table: Phil Archer, W3C Data Activity Lead coordinating work on the Semantic Web and related technologies; Ivan Herman, who last year transitioned roles at the W3C from Semantic Activity Lead to Digital Publishing Activity Lead; and Eric Miller, co-founder and president of Zepheira and the leader of the Semantic Web Initiative at the W3C until 2007.

While The Semantic Web came to the attention of the wider public in 2001, with the publication in The Scientific American of The Semantic Web by Tim Berners-Lee, James Hendler and Ora Lassila, Archer points out that “one could argue that the Semantic Web is 25 years old,” too. He cites Berners-Lee’s March 1989 paper, Information Management: A Proposal, that includes a diagram that shows relationships that are immediately recognizable as triples. “That’s how Tim envisaged it from Day 1,” Archer says.

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The TopQuadrant blog recently compared Spin with RIF. According to the post, “Since SPIN (SPARQL Inferencing Notation) aka SPARQL Rules became W3C
member submission
,we find ourselves responding to the growing interest to it. With this, a question some may ask is how SPIN is different from or similar to RIF – W3C’s standard for rules interchange. While I have heard this asked a couple of times, I was pleasantly surprised that it was is not a very common question. Pleasantly, because a certain level of confusion is to be expected about new things and, both, SPIN and RIF are relatively new. Read more

SPIN: An object-oriented framework for business rules using SPARQL – SemTech 2009 Video

Holger Knublauch
Vice President

The current generation of Semantic Web languages is well suited to link data and to define domain concepts and relationships. However, real-world applications that operate on those linked data models typically need higher expressivity than what is provided by OWL and RDF Schema alone. SPIN is an open-source framework that supports the use of SPARQL to define business rules and constraint checks on Semantic Web models with object-oriented modeling techniques. This simple yet powerful mechanism makes it possible to define self-describing domain models that can then be used by generic software components such as user interface renderers, schema mappers and workflow engines. Instead of hard-coding behavior in languages like Java, SPIN makes it possible to declaratively define complex business rules and processes. SPIN can also be used to define new higher-level modeling languages with built-in semantics.

This talk:

  • Sets the stage with a quick review of SPARQL (incl. CONSTRUCT keyword)
  • Introduces SPIN as a mechanism to attach SPARQL queries to class definitions
  • Shows how to define new SPARQL functions and reusable query templates with SPIN
  • Demonstrates the use of SPIN for tasks ranging from unit conversion to computer games
  • Shows how the ideas of SPIN give rise to a new software development paradigm around self-describing linked data models

SPIN: An object-oriented framework for business rules using SPARQL from Semantic Universe on Vimeo.

TopQuadrant Webcast II: SPARQL for Business Rules and Constraint Checking: Introducing SPIN*

Date: April 1, 2009, 11:00AM (1 hour)
Register: View the archived webcast
Q&A: Q&A Session for Webinar II: SPARQL for Business Rules and Constraint Checking: Introducing SPIN*

Semantic Web modeling languages like OWL offer a standard way to define domain concepts and their relationships. This alone, however, can’t fully address the need for describing executable behavior. Using the domain models for data validation, transformation and other application specific reasoning typically requires expressivity of rule languages. In this webinar we show how to use SPARQL to define efficient business rules and constraint checks that will work with any RDF database.

This webinar will:

  • Demonstrate the use of SPARQL and SPIN for tasks such as unit conversion, computer games, and executable domain-specific languages.
  • Discuss the advantages of combining best practices from the object oriented world with the flexibility of the Semantic Web languages.
  • Show how to define new SPARQL functions and reusable query templates

(SPIN = SPARQL Inferencing Notation; see Introducing SPIN (SPARQL Inferencing Notation)  and/or


Holger Knublauch
Holger Knublauch
TopQuadrant. Inc.

Holger Knublauch is Vice President, Product Development at TopQuadrant, where he is responsible for the TopBraid product suite. TopBraid is a comprehensive set of tools for editing, visualizing, querying, and publishing Semantic Web models. Holger is also the main developer of the visual semantic scripting language SPARQLMotion and the SPARQL Inferencing Notation SPIN. Prior to joining TopQuadrant, Holger was the primary developer of the Protege-OWL plugin at Stanford University. He holds a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Ulm.

Dean Allemang
Dean Allemang
Dr. Allemang specializes in innovative applications of knowledge technology and brings to TopQuadrant over 15 years of experience in research, deployment, and development of knowledge-based systems. He developed the curriculum for Top Quadrant’s successful training series for Semantic Web technologies, which he has been presenting to customers world-wide for four years. Dean has completed a master’s degree at the University of Cambridge as a Marshall scholar, a PhD at the Ohio State University as a National Science Foundation Graduate Scholar, and is a two-time winner of the Swiss Prize for Innovation in Technology. Prior to joining TopQuadrant, Dr. Allemang was the Vice-President of Customer Applications at Synquiry Technologies, were he filed two patents on the application of graph matching algorithms to the problems of semantic information interchange.