The Semantic Web is beginning to gain steam along with the related (but separate) NoSQL and BigData movements; but what is the Semantic Web (commonly abbreviated “SW”)? The term itself sounds like some uber geek-speak and turns off most people without a technical background and appreciation of web evolution almost immediately after hearing it. However, whether the business world knows it or not, the Semantic Web will be the defining information technology of this decade (2010-2020). Let me start this off with the abridged version for the very impatient, by providing three simple definitions of three key terms RDF, LOD and SW. Sorry, but reading through these three are necessary to be able to understand the core concept of the Semantic Web…
“Resource Description Framework is a building block technology (like a single lego brick) to enable the Semantic Web to be built”.
“Linked Open Data is a set of best practices, policies and guidelines for connecting datasets on the Web to make them more Semantic (like the instruction manual for a pack of legos, detailing how to put your bricks together to make them match the image on the box, so that you get what you expected and can then show it off to others and they can understand what you’ve created and how you’ve done it).”
“The Semantic Web is a cross-domain network of data, services and applications built upon the World Wide Web in a particular manner, such that the data, services and applications can be easily interconnected in novel ways (like a big, “constantly updated” encyclopaedia/guidebook of all the cool structures and combinations that have EVER been made with Legos – such as towers, castles, dinosaurs, robots, vehicles, animals, scenes, and just about anything people can dream up)”.
Linked Data and Semantic Web Defined In Detail
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The ALPHA version of SkipSearch has been released!!!
- Easy-to-use Interface with hover-intent to reduce clicks, audio controls & shortcuts
- Lightweight HTML5 / CSS3 layout
- Mobile-friendly, responsive design
- Schema.org properties and support for RDFa/Microformats
- Import data from multiple accounts (Google/Yahoo/Microsoft/Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIN/Last.FM/StumbleUpon and other social media account integration)
- Export functionality based on open formats (RSS, ATOM, OPML, XSPF, FOAF)
- OpenID authentication
- OAuth authorization
With the real, true and unbiased news inevitably moving online towards the so-called “Alternative Media” (which really is almost reaching the point where it is not alternative so much as the first go-to source), its a good idea to start replicating some of the most useful elements from Television, Print and Radio (aka. the rest of the dinosaur media).
The CNN News Ticker Tape is a somewhat controversial item, as it is considered annoying by many. However, in terms of being able to quickly get information across the screen without interrupting another presentation, it is arguably somewhat effective. Proponents of its use claim it is the best way to get instant updates while maintaining a coherent programming schedule, while critics point to its potential for misuse and indoctrination of the weak-minded with subliminal messages flashing across the screen or fear-mongering sensationalism so common in the “Mainstream Media” today.
Taking the bad and the good into consideration, I’ve thrown together a mock-up that could function somewhat similarly to the Semantically Enhanced Video Pop-ups I’ve implemented using Popcorn.js and to replicate the VH1 Pop-up Video effect. You could imagine having the usefulness of having contextual content being inferred based on the content being viewed, or, simply populating a basic news ticker with the entries from an existing RSS or Atom news feed to link to the day’s top stories.
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According to Mozilla: “Popcorn makes video work like the web. We create tools and programs to help developers and authors create interactive pages that supplement video and audio with rich web content, allowing your creations to live and grow online.”
BC$ = Behavior, Content, Money
The goal of the BC$ project is to raise awareness and make changes with respect to the three pillars of information freedom - Behavior (pursuit of interests and passions), Content (sharing/exchanging ideas in various formats), Money (fairness and accessibility) - bringing to light the fact that:
1. We regularly hand over our browser histories, search histories and daily online activities to companies that want our money, or, to benefit from our use of their services with lucrative ad deals or sales of personal information.
2. We create and/or consume interesting content on their services, but we aren't adequately rewarded for our creative efforts or loyalty.
3. We pay money to be connected online (and possibly also over mobile), yet we lose both time and money by allowing companies to market to us with unsolicited advertisements, irrelevant product offers and unfairly structured service pricing plans.