6 replies on “Semantic Web for dummies”

  1. Hi,

    I was wondering if you know the answers to the following questions

    Q1. Why do we insert our RDF/XML file into MySQL database in Semantic Web ?

    Q2. What is b node, literal and resource ?

    Q3. Why do we need models ?

    Please reply.

    Thanks in anticipation

    1. Q1: You do not have to put your RDF data into a MySQL database. Actually, you should not. There exist triplestores that are databases especially designed to manage RDF data. Additionally, you can publish RDF data as regular files on the web if you want. The only dilemma by publishing RDF data this way is that there is no possibility for querying the data.

      Q2: Blank nodes are data resources that do not have URIs. They are anonomous resources that are used for describing one specific statement as several statements. Literals are data that are of raw data types, such as numbers, dates, text etc. Literals always acts as the object in a triple, as they are not data resources themselves, thus making it impossible for them to refer to other data. Data resources are identified by URIs (Uniform Resource Identifiers) and can be looked at as a data object that contains several statements that describes one specific resource. For instance, the data resource of the company Microsoft would contain a statement saying that the name of the CEO of Microsoft is “Bill Gates”.

      Q3: I’m not completely sure what you mean by “models”, but I will assume that you mean data models. Data models (called ontologies in the Semantic Web) are a vital part of the Semantic Web and Linked Data idea, as they give semantics to the data you are describing in your RDF model. They make it possible for both humans AND machines to interpret and understand the data. You should try to re-use as many ontologies as you possibly can, as this will support one of the most important principles behind the Semantic Web and the Linked Data ideas, which are datainteroperability across applications.

      I hope this can clear things up a bit.

  2. Great intro to the concept of Semantic Web for newbies like me. Especially liked the clarity with which you have illustrated how symbol, syntax and semantics are linked. Very helpful!

  3. @Anna:

    Q1: You do not have to put your RDF data into a MySQL database. Actually, you should not. There exist triplestores that are databases especially designed to manage RDF data. Additionally, you can publish RDF data as regular files on the web if you want. The only dilemma by publishing RDF data this way is that there is no possibility for querying the data.

    Q2: Blank nodes are data resources that do not have URIs. They are anonomous resources that are used for describing one specific statement as several statements. Literals are data that are of raw data types, such as numbers, dates, text etc. Literals always acts as the object in a triple, as they are not data resources themselves, thus making it impossible for them to refer to other data. Data resources are identified by URIs (Uniform Resource Identifiers) and can be looked at as a data object that contains several statements that describes one specific resource. For instance, the data resource of the company Microsoft would contain a statement saying that the name of the CEO of Microsoft is “Bill Gates”.

    Q3: I’m not completely sure what you mean by “models”, but I will assume that you mean data models. Data models (called ontologies in the Semantic Web) are a vital part of the Semantic Web and Linked Data idea, as they give semantics to the data you are describing in your RDF model. They make it possible for both humans AND machines to interpret and understand the data. You should try to re-use as many ontologies as you possibly can, as this will support one of the most important principles behind the Semantic Web and the Linked Data ideas, which are datainteroperability across applications.

    I hope this can clear things up a bit.

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