Re: semantic web tools in a shared hosting environment

Hi Matthew,

> I’m hoping that someone can provide some advice/pointers on setting- 
> up/configuring semantic web tools (e.g. RDF parsers, SPARQL  
> services, etc.) in a shared hosting environment where one does not  
> have root access, etc.  Assuming that languages such as Perl,  
> Python, and PHP are accessible (but not Java),

It might clarify your question to explicitly state "free or open- 
source tools", or "web scripting languages", if that's what you mean.  
You could install and run Java in your user account on a high port, or  
do the same with almost any commercial tool. Very few, I imagine,  
require root.

> For a small-scale application, is a true “triple store” database  
> actually necessary?  Would it be simpler (especially for learning)  
> to simply use flat files?  If so, this would potentially simplify my  
> configuration work.

If you're mostly concerned with serving RDF, you can do quite a lot by  
dumping some RDF to disk and configuring Apache correctly for content  

Anything beyond that, you probably want a persistent RDF store. If  
you're limited to a typical shared hosting setup, that probably means  
"some Apache-compatible language like PHP that stores its data in  
MySQL". I'm afraid I can't offer any advice in that area; others will  
doubtless mention Perl APIs, RAP, and others.

I have to say: if I were given this situation, I'd consider whether I  
would be best serving static files, or using a real RDF store. If the  
latter, I'd pay the small amount extra for a "real" host (e.g.,  
Slicehost versus DreamHost) and use one of the many excellent RDF  
systems out there. The restrictions you imagine exist might not be  



Received on Friday, 14 March 2008 03:38:17 UTC