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Web Services, the Semantic Web, and RDF  RSS feed

 
Bobby Lewis
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Hi,
Is anyone out there familiar with the notion of the Semantic Web? I read part of a book recently on the semantic web and RDF and was wondering what is up with that subject. What with all the publicity about "web services", no one has talked much on the semantic web.
Thoughts? Are these two intertwined, the same, totally distinct? My impression is a web service world is one where independent systems are configured to intercommunicate somewhat indepenedently over the internet using various protocols. The semantic web is more of a notion aimed at consumer use, "agents" if you will, although I hate to use another over-publicized under-delivered term. The semantic web provides meaning to the computer and agents so that a user can get more out of the web than even Google can offer by just doing a lot of raw processing of the text and hyperlinks on pages.
When I read about the semantic web, I thought it was a great idea, but I don't see much being done in the area. I would like to have an agent/interface where I can say "I want to buy a brown chair" and it returns links to sites not just based on the words "brown chair" but intelligently looks for sites that sell furniture then chooses chairs, seats, couches, etc. that are listed in various colors, including brown. Anyway, I hope you get my point.
Bobby Lewis
 
Mapraputa Is
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"by just doing a lot of raw processing of the text and hyperlinks on pages" - Amazon recently offers their info in XML format. Just click on this URL and you will get books in "XML" category. Now you can write a small nice XSLT and apply further processing/format it for your needs. Actually, a couple of hours ago I did it and got this table of all books on Java published in July 2002.
I like that I can write my own "agents" and get exactly what I want.
I would like to have an agent/interface where I can say "I want to buy a brown chair" and it returns links to sites not just based on the words "brown chair" but intelligently looks for sites that sell furniture then chooses chairs, seats, couches, etc. that are listed in various colors, including brown.
Apparently Google has it: http://ftrain.com/google_takes_all.html
[ July 31, 2002: Message edited by: Mapraputa Is ]
 
Steve Loughran
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there is an ideological split between the semantic web and the web service camps, although some proposals try and bridge the gaps (DAML+OIL) so that agents can reason about web services.
Look on it as the semantic web is trying to apply AI learning to the web, so you can publish information for "agents" to understand, whereas web services are publishing endpoints of services for other programs to invoke. Base web services have the metadata about parameters and things, but not the high level 'what does this service do' stuff that agents can also handle.
Both use XML very intensely.
if you want more info, go to XML.com and the W3C
-steve
(in the web service camp, but who knows many people in the semantic web camp)
 
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