RE: Semantic Web for the Masses, by the Masses
It is not useful to pit the 'common' user against the 'guru'. It is useful to compare the approaches to deriving and applying the ontology. 1. A bottom up approach is effective in the same way having locusts harvest crops is effective: self-directed, large numbers, slightly messy but fast. A single harvester grabbing single rows is more expensive but may be doing other tasks along the way. 2. An approach like Google Base where the initial inputs are examined then guided is a mix of the two approaches and likely to be the most effective overall as an ontological framework exists and mapped but the common user doesn't have to learn it. 3. The difference is a priori learning vs just-in-time commitment to the ontology. A guru designs an ontology, someone designs and implements a mapping strategy, and the user is given a choice of ad hoc inputs and selections. This is a potentially noisy approach but over time, it is possible to derive the statistical deviations and assign confidence values. 4. Use determines application. For some large percentage of cases, the mapping noise isn't significant if the application is search unless the return value is used for a significant process, the outcome of which is critical to some other process. To understand if and where the semantic web adds value, you must know the value proposition of the process(s) relying on its service(s). This is where the semantic web meets service oriented architectures. The common quality of webs of any kind are holes. len
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