Thursday, March 23, 2006

A Little Bit of Semantics Goes a Long Way

There are now over 20 versions of semantic wikis that are being developed. For example see here. What is interesting is the large number of ways that people are approaching this process. One of the phrases that I heard a lot of at the Semantic Technology Conference was A Little Bit of Semantics Goes a Long Way. An although I admire all the innovations that people are putting into their semantic wiki projects, to me I think that just adding attributes to a page and adding types to links is all that we really need to test the concepts out. It was also pointed out to me that several other wikis do have strong ACL features and you can "lock-down" pages using tools such as Apache administration tools. There also seems to be a lot of discussion about implementing semantic wikis using triple stores. This seems to me a little ahead of its time. If using a triple store makes a system more flexible, but it appears to me that the current structure is more than flexible enough to meet most business requirements. If people wanted to work on something useful, I would suggest something like a natural language front-end to Wikipedia so people could type in a written language questions like "What is the population of Minneapolis?". That would be useful! - Dan

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