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Re: Owning URIs (Was: Yet Another LOD cloud browser)

From: Daniel Schwabe <dschwabe@inf.puc-rio.br>
Date: Mon, 01 Jun 2009 23:23:38 -0300
Message-ID: <4A248D2A.9080109@inf.puc-rio.br>
To: Sherman Monroe <sdmonroe@gmail.com>
CC: Dan Brickley <danbri@danbri.org>, Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@openlinksw.com>, David Huynh <dfhuynh@alum.mit.edu>, Linked Data community <public-lod@w3.org>, semantic-web@w3.org
Sherman,
as another alternative, I urge you to take a look at Explorator [1] 
(there is a short movie explaining the basic idea, you can also play 
with the live interface), which can do all of what you said, and more.
It provides a more general exploration paradigm, of which the example 
you give below is only one of the possibilities...

Best
Daniel
[1] http://www.tecweb.inf.puc-rio.br/explorator.

Sherman Monroe wrote:
> Dan,
>
> ...
> As for pivoting and set-based browsing in general, it's a very novel 
> paridigm that requires more study, espeically user-oriented studies. 
> It's easy to mis-apply old methods to this new UI approach, for 
> example, how Parallax creates a 1-dimensional (i.e. 2-directional) 
> breadcrumb trail. This is borrowed from WWW browsing, where the only 
> directions from the "subject" (i.e. web page loaded) is back and 
> forward. But in a linked database, the number of directions from a 
> subject is equal to the number of possible types of the links from 
> that subject to its objects. So it's a truly n-dimensional hyperspace. 
> Thus, the 2D-breadcrumbs trail, while helpful, does not truly orient 
> user's current position in the database. Here is my attempt to 
> describe how navigating the linked dataspace would feel in real life, 
> to better bring out the point. Image a linked database as a building, 
> and each room contains a set of one or more resources matching a 
> SPARQL criteria, and along the walls of the room are portals leading 
> to other rooms, where each portal represents an RDF property those 
> resources share. Now say I'm browsing a social network database, and 
> I'm in DanBrickley's room, and I open and enter his *foaf:knows* 
> portal. Now I am in /DanBrickley >> foaf:knows/ portal. The portals in 
> here represent all the properties shared by all the folks Dan knows. 
> Where can I go? I can go back through the DanBrickley portal, or 
> through one of the property portals. Now here is the magic introduced 
> by the structured XML SPARQL query. Suppose that from here, I want to 
> enter the *foaf:interest* portal. In there, I see /semantic web/. Now 
> I kick out all the other resources in this room, so that only semantic 
> web remains. If I go back into the *foaf:interest* portal through 
> which I came, I now find this list of friends is narrowed to just 
> those whose interest is semantic web. The abilty to manipulate a room 
> and have it affect the state of all other rooms in my breadcrumbs, is 
> something you can't currently do with Parallax, because of it's 2D 
> navigational path (David or anyone, I make this statement after having 
> tried witht he interface myself, the browse all>> link on properties 
> is the cloest thing I found). Now from this room (the /friends whose 
> interest is semantic web/ room), I now go through the 
> *foaf:currentProject* portal. I have now forked my criteria (an 
> ability that was in Piggybank/Longwell, but missing from Parallax for 
> some reason). Here I find the /Umbel Project/. Because each resource 
> also acts like a portal (thanks to resource dereference :), I enter 
> the /Umbel Portal/, and now I'm in a new room inside a totally new 
> building containing rooms specialized around technology projects (a 
> building represents a SPARQL endpoint, linked database source, an RDF 
> graph, etc). So the portals can lead into/out of any building 
> imaginable. Parallax only allows for navigating inside one building, 
> i.e. Freebase, a second short coming.
>
> Not to pick on Parallax at all, it's outstanding work that must 
> continue to be pushed and improved, so I'm just here to whet the 
> concepts it introduces. I have found the above visualazation of the 
> linked database helpful in my work with linked data browsers, most 
> recently razorbase. I've toyed with the notion of a 3D linked data 
> browser along these principles, but don't know if that could actually 
> be more useful than simple tables for large audiences.
Received on Tuesday, 2 June 2009 02:24:21 UTC

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