I have attended the semantic technology conference again this year – the largest gathering for semantic tech companies. Several things stand out:
Google gave a session on semantics – amazing change of altitude from the past. They support mircoformat and RDFa in documents and use metadata to make search results more relevant.Â Great turning point.
Several companies have opened their NLP/semantic analysis core through api service, and they are free at least for developers. This is great news for the developer community because more tools are avaliable for creating new semantic web applications. In addition to OpenCalais and Zemanta, which I have tried before, the new semantic apis come from Ontos, AdaptiveBlue, Dapper, and Expert Systems.
Tom Gruber announced virtual personal assitant from his new company Siri. It works on mobil phone and provides a speech input interace for intelligent search. Cool product!
I moderated a panel discussion on web intelligence. Four companies on the panel (Siri, Zemanta, Expert Systems, Overtone) have different tricks to bring some levels of intelligence to the web or customers.Â There were lots of questions from the audience. My opening remarks tried to convey the following messages:
1. Web intelligence is becoming the hallmark of the web as social networking connects people closer. The impact is showing up in many application ares:
- Smarter Social Networking
- connect to people you like and sources you trust
- assisted by consumer intelligent agents
- Twine, Siri
- Semantic Search answering your questions
- Google, Microsoft Bing, Wolfram Alpha
- Semantic Publishing
- Reuters, Freebase, Zemanta
- Web-scale Market Intelligence
- understand customer needs in real time
- having intelligent dialog with customersÂ (branding)
- Overtone, Attensity, ScoutLabs
- Semantic Online Advertising
- targeted by content semantics
- Google, Peer39, TextWise
2. Plenty of open/free tools and data are available for developers to start creating web apps with intelligence.
Lots of free/open tools available to play with:
- semantic analysis API: Open Calais, Zemanta
- NLP: OpenNLP, Stanford NLP tools
- knowledge management: Protege, Jena
- search: Lucene, Solr
- social networking: Orkut,
Lots of data available:
- Twitter stream
- News feeds, blog feeds, …
- Wikipedia, Freebase, DBPedia, …
3. Latest trend:Â real time data + intelligence. Semantic Web SIG will focus on twitter stream and applications on the next event on July 1.Â TechCrunch will devote a full-day conference for this topic if real time data stream on July 10.
Overrall, the semantic technolgy is getting more steam now and we’ll see what killer apps will emerge in the next year or so.