Posts Tagged ‘SWRL’

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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An Easier Approach To Ontology Editing

It’s probably not news to most people that not everyone is expert at using OWL for authoring or editing ontologies. Domain experts who don’t find the XML-based syntax for OWL particularly user-friendly need a hand, and that’s where Controlled Natural Language (CNL) tools come in.

One such tool for editing and manipulating ontologies is Fluent Editor from Cognitum. The major product from the vendor, now in Version 2, lets users edit ontologies, expressed with CNL, that are compatible with OWL 2 and SWRL (Semantic Web Rule Language). When the company debuted Version 1 a couple of years back, it discovered that “there are a lot of people interested in semantic technology,” says CEO Pawel Zarzycki. That includes business analysts and other domain experts who would like to express some business rules and to leverage a semantic system for the computer as a supporting tool.

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FIBO Technology Summit At SemTechBiz: Financial Industry And Sem Tech Leaders Discuss Ontology Evaluation Tools, FLORA-2′s Potential, And More

Last week’s Semantic Technology & Business Conference played host to the FIBO (Financial Business Industry Ontology) Technology Summit. The event, which saw some 60 conference participants from the semantic web, financial industry and other sectors, as well as academia, was led by David S. Newman, SVP & Strategic Planning Manager Enterprise Architecture, at Wells Fargo and Chair of the Enterprise Data Management Council’s Semantics Program, and Dennis E. Wisnosky, founder of Wizdom Systems who is providing technical strategy and operational guidance to the Council for finalizing and implementing FIBO standards.

“This was a tremendous milestone for FIBO and FIBO’s full evolution,” Newman told The Semantic Web Blog following the event. It brought “together a lot of smart people working with semantic technology for a number of years to get their insights into how to further mature FIBO, as well as how to mature the technology, so that FIBO can really resonate with the regulatory community and the financial industry, so that it will have some real solid traction, be able to truly scale to the needs of the constituencies” – that is, not only financial institutions but the entire financial system. Says Newman, “That’s a big, tall order.”

The idea behind FIBO is to standardize the language used to precisely define the terms, conditions, and characteristics of financial instruments; the legal and relationship structure of business entities; the content and time dimensions of market data; and the legal obligations and process aspects of corporate actions. As an open-source, global financial initiative, it is planned to bring health to the financial system, through defining a vast amount of information semantically and providing a better capability for the industry and its regulators to look at more complex patterns and relationships of information in friendlier ways than conventional technology can offer.

At a session following the FIBO Technology Summit at last week’s conference, Wisnosky, also formerly the chief architect and CTO of the Department of Defense, explained one way the financial industry should view FIBO. Today, he said, financial institutions “spend hundreds of millions of dollars gathering data for regulators, with no advantage internally. The carrot [of FIBO] is to reduce those costs.” Ignore the carrot and wait for regulators to ask for more data, and watch costs go up. Added Newman, “if information is highly trustworthy, then the perception of risk regulators have of the financial industry might be lessened, if they can govern and certify an institution aligns with a common data standard, which is FIBO in our proposal.”

During that session, Newman also brought up some of the outcomes of the FIBO Technology Summit, such as discussions that were held about challenges to defining regulatory rules that are more complex and beyond the means of OWL 2 DL and SWRL. In his conversation with The Semantic Web Blog following the conference, he provided more details.

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“Semantic Web Programming” book now available – John Hebeler

Your guide to building working solutions for the Semantic Web.

We wrote Semantic Web Programming to offer a useful guide to get the Semantic Web to do stuff – such as data integration and rich data analysis. We are active developers in this space and directly see its potential.  We outline the key concepts, tools, and methods you need to program the Semantic Web to achieve these goals.  Our book is filled with practical, easy-to-follow, examples using working code to illustrate how to take advantage of the many data sources and services available today, especially non-semantic ones like instant messaging, relational databases, and web services such as those offered by Facebook. 

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