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The Semantic Web: What is it and why should you care?

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  1. The Semantic Web:What is it and why should you care? for Toronto IRMAC/DAMA Oct 19, 2005 Semantic Arts, Inc. Dave McComb

  2. Objectives • Semantics > Good Definitions • Exotic Terminology • Pursue this further

  3. Semantic Web Semantic Technology Semantic Methodology, Design & Approach

  4. Part 2: Semantic Metadata and Annotated Data Part 3: Semantic Web Part 1: Intro, Concepts and Methods Part 4: Demos

  5. Semantic Concepts, Discipline and Methods Part 1: Intro, Concepts and Methods

  6. Semantics • The study of meaning • (sometimes the study of the meaning of words)

  7. Structure and Metadata • You can now deal with thousands, even millions of transactions, by knowing only a small amount of metadata

  8. Drowning in Metadata Commit to share ontologies to get back to thousands/ tens of thousands of concepts Thousands -> millions of bits of metadata Meta metadata? XMI/MOF/CWM Millions -> Billions of instances in hundreds of databases

  9. Operative Semantics Some of these fields are “known” to the system and cause overt changes in behavior

  10. Others are more subtle This one shows up in the AP list of bills to pay This one shows up on the check This one shows up on the detailed P&L reports

  11. None of this is mentioned in the user manual or on line help text

  12. Scale issues

  13. Carver Mead

  14. Flat Earth Schema Higher level, business concepts We need to get up out of the weeds

  15. Semantic Framework

  16. Anna wierzbicka • Semantics: Primes and Universals • Anna Wierzbicka

  17. Semantic Primes Anna Wierzbicka

  18. First Prime • Discrete Physical Object • Something to which you could (potentially) attach a unique bar code

  19. Physical Items

  20. Semantic Primes for Business • Monetary Amount • Reference Value • Decision • Request • Rights • Permission • Offer • Order (Directive) • Contract/Order • Messages • Documents • Inventions • Programs • People • Animals • Physical Made Items • Buildings • Landmarks • Physical Container • Homogenous Material • Legal Entities • Historical Events • Conversion • Scheduled Events • Defined Events • Measurement • Estimate

  21. “G’arn?” Role of context “Narn”

  22. Context • How many addresses do you have in your database? • One of our clients has 116. • How many types of addresses are there?

  23. Context • Where • When • Relationships • Purpose • What differentiates the 116? • Context, such as

  24. Categories How Categories Inform Us

  25. Example Categories Inventory system (categories disguised as attributes): Fast/Slow Moving High/Low Value Attractive Degradable Insurance spare A/B/C

  26. Example Categories Inventory system (categories disguised as entities): Parts Serialized Parts Equipment Raw Material Kits Tools Assemblies Phantoms

  27. Example Categories Inventory system (categories disguised as states): Out of Stock Discontinued Obsolete On Order Reserved In Inspection

  28. Example Categories Inventory system (categories disguised as relations): Stock for this warehouse Preferred Supplier On consignment Issued to In Use

  29. What are we doing??? • We categorize things all the time. • As data modelers we set up other people’s categories for them. • We decide whether their categories will be expressed as: • Entities • Attributes (codes, enums, flags and labels) • States • Relations • Classes • Types • etc.

  30. Category Definition • Encarta:“a group or set of things, people, or actions that are classified together because of common characteristics” • Cambridge (English): “a type, or a group of things having some features that are the same” • Cambridge (American): ”a grouping of people or things by type in any systematic arrangement. (The light trucks weigh less than 5,000 pounds and are in a category that includes minivans, pickups, and sport utility vehicles)” • Infoplease: “any general or comprehensive division; a class” • Encyclopedia.com: “philosophical term that literally means predication or assertion”

  31. Operative Definition of Categories • Semantic Arts:“A description of a set of things that contains: • A set of testable membership criteria that can either improve or reduce our confidence in the membership • A set of additional information that can be inferred from the membership • A set of behaviors that can be applied to members of the category • A set of questions that can be applied to the instance to gather property or relationship values”

  32. Hidden Categories • Almost every “IF…THEN…” or “CASE…” statement contains a category • So does the procedures manual • You are aware of some of them

  33. Categories and Behavior • The reason to create a new category is if the distinction (the new category) will be treated differently, behaviorally • By a program, or • By a human

  34. Categories and Behavior • The reason to subsume categories (through a taxonomy or just collapse them) is if they can be treated the same, behaviorally

  35. Wrap on Discipline

  36. Part 2: Semantic Metadata and Annotated Data

  37. Metadata and Annotated Data

  38. Content: FOAF • Friend Of A Friend • Ontology for contacts

  39. Content: Dublin Core

  40. So, how do we do this?

  41. Business Vocabulary • Not whether, but • when: • as you come across the terms, or up front? • what source: • source documents, interviews or existing systems? • how: • defining terms or concepts?

  42. Business Vocabulary Schema Jargon

  43. Injured workers -- representatives • Information contained in the claim files and records of injured workers, under the provisions of this title, shall be deemed confidential and shall not be open to public inspection (other than to public employees in the performance of their official duties), but representatives of a claimant, be it an individual or an organization, may review a claim file or receive specific information therefore upon the presentation of the signed authorization of the claimant.

  44. Employers -- Representatives • Employers or their duly authorized representatives may review any files of their own injured workers in connection with any pending claims.

  45. Claimant • A claimant may review his or her claim file if the director determines, pursuant to criteria adopted by rule, that the review is in the claimant's interest.

  46. Patient • Except as otherwise provided by law, all treatment records shall remain confidential. Treatment records may be released only to the persons designated in this section, or to other persons designated in an informed written consent of the patient….[much more]

  47. Child Victims • Information revealing the identity of child victims of sexual assault who are under age eighteen is confidential and not subject to public disclosure. Identifying information means the child victim's name, address, location, photograph, and in cases in which the child victim is a relative or stepchild of the alleged perpetrator, identification of the relationship between the child and the alleged perpetrator.

  48. Dilbert’s Boss Understands This