W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > semantic-web@w3.org > February 2006

Re: Showing the Semantic Web

From: Daniel Harris <daniel@kendra.org.uk>
Date: Fri, 17 Feb 2006 21:26:52 +0000
Message-Id: <7058F6F4-D165-483D-B490-0E6F4E3B10D2@kendra.org.uk>
Cc: Semantic Web <semantic-web@w3.org>, Frank Manola <fmanola@acm.org>, newsml-2@yahoogroups.com
To: Misha Wolf <Misha.Wolf@reuters.com>

On 17 Feb 2006, at 20:19, Misha Wolf wrote:
> Forgive me for being naive, but I do not comprehend how it will be
> possible to formulate successful queries along the lines of:
>
>    Find me all stories about which X says with more than 70%
>    confidence that they have subject Y.
>
> if there isn't an agreed way of making these assertions, supported
> by an adequate range of off-the-shelf tools.

This is a really good point. Why it's so good is that it highlights  
the idea of ways of making assertions and also ways of making  
searches. It's important to remember the idea of loosely coupled  
systems and also of bottom up (home grown) "ways" or descriptions of  
assertions and searches.

It would be so easy if we just had one committee to map out all of  
our information and it all went through one portal. But we don't and  
we can't. We have to interoperate all of the current systems out  
there. Hopefully the Semantic Web will assist us with providing a  
framework with which we can map (translate) one description method to  
another. Yeah?

So, I don't believe we will ever have "an agreed way of making these  
assertions" and nor should we seek it. It's far too top down. What we  
need is a way of *describing* the way that we are making these  
assertions. Not everyone will choose the same *way* of describing.  
But that's OK. Because what we need is then a way of translating from  
one *way* (description "format") to another. Now, if you're groaning  
at this point then yeah, take a look at the world out there - it's  
mushy and fuzzy and sloshy as heck.

And if we want to be able to serve the world then we need to be  
flexible (loosely coupled) in the systems we build. And that means  
following the philosophy (and allowing for) the fact that there is  
always more than just one way to get to the same place or achieve the  
same result. And hence there are no right or wrong ways just  
different ways. And you can bet anything that no two people will  
choose the same way (most of the time)...

Let's interoperate them!

Cheers Daniel
Received on Friday, 17 February 2006 21:27:18 UTC

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