Semantic Web

Spring, 2010

20 ECE 716


Brief Description: Managing data and knowledge imbedded in the Semantic Web. Topics: World Wide Web and how the Semantic Web may store semantically identified data. Loosely structured data is given well-defined meaning, better enabling computers and people to work in cooperation. Ontologies allow data to be more readily embedded, transferred, and understood. Knowledge extraction. Knowledge representations including RDF, XML, OWL.




This course will consider the World Wide Web and how the Semantic Web may be used to store and access Web stored data. The Semantic Web's data is less structured than in conventional databases. In the Semantic Web, loosely structured stored data is given well-defined meaning, better enabling computers and people to work in cooperation. It focuses on data stored in web pages. Data is stored using ontologies; this allows data to be more readily embedded and transferred through web pages. Without the Semantic Web, data stored in heterogeneous, multiple developer web pages is difficult to access and use.

Background On The Semantic Web

It is sometimes hard to realize that the web is only about a dozen years old. Being so new, it is not surprising that dramatic, big jumps in the technology are taking place. At first the web was just static pages connected by hyperlinks. This evolved into dynamic pages where the data is in a database and displayed at will. But this is still presented to the user as a fixed page of data. Autonomously making use of the data on a web page is often difficult, as it is not clear what are the purposes of each data item and how they are related. However, it is potentially very useful to be able to use data from several Web pages together to support the same task. If the data is not represented using the Semantic Web, integrating numerous web pages that were written for different purposes by different organizations using different writing styles can be extremely difficult.

The semantic web is the key initiative driving the future of the World Wide Web. Semantic Web technology and ontologies electronically makes available information to improve the quality of knowledge management in large and distributed organizations. Ontologies are formal structures supporting knowledge sharing and reuse. They can be used to represent explicitly the semantics of structured and semi-structured information, which enable sophisticated automatic support for acquiring, maintaining and accessing information. Ontology discovery, generation, merger, and validation are critical to the Semantic Web.

The Web provides a medium for storing, presenting, gathering, sharing, processing and using information. The impacts of the Web can be felt in almost all aspects of life. The Semantic Web's purpose is to make data and services more accessible to computers far more useful. This course will discuss the basic technologies and their interrelations that play key roles in the Semantic Web. The Semantic Web is used to representation of data on the World Wide Web. It is based on the Resource Description Framework (RDF), which integrates a variety of applications using XML for syntax and URLs for naming.


20-ECE-610, Database Management Theory; or 20-CS-651, Database Theory

last changed: 29 March 2010