Thursday, June 4, 2009

Update and Semantic Web Austin's next event: Semantic Search in Practice

I should start blogging again! Just a quick update. I am currently a researcher at the Ontology Engineering Group of the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid over the summer. My goal this summer is to start a project on data integration with sensor and stream data, all with semantic web technologies! Therefore, I won't be at any of the events this summer in Austin. However, I will be traveling to SemTech in San Jose (thanks for the free registration!). Nevertheless, I am still organizing events for Semantic Web Austin and fun things are going to happen.

Tonight, we were suppose to have a meetup with Jans Aasman, CEO of Franz and creators of the AllegroGraph triplestore. Unfortunately due to a personal emergency, Jans had to cancel. We hope to reschedule this event for July.

However, June is still going to have an event! I am very please to announce that Peter Mika from Yahoo! Research in Barcelona will be coming to Austin to give a full day hands-on tutorial on "Semantic Search in Practice" . Here is the abstract:
Saturday June 27
MCC Building
3925 W Braker Lane
Austin TX 78759

While current search techniques aim at ever more sophisticated methods for searching over hypertext, the Semantic Web promises to break new boundaries in search by transforming the content itself into a form that is more easily processable by machines.

In this talk we discuss in-depth some of the technologies that can be used to annotate content for machine processing and showcase some of the ways that semantic annotations can be used to improve the search experience for users. Each part will consist of 60 minutes of presentations and 30 minutes of hands on work. This talk is intended for developers and researchers new to the Semantic Web, but also for publishers of Web content (site owners) and SEO specialists interested in preparing content for use by semantic-aware search engines and other applications. We will focus on the Web and formats used on the Web, although similar techniques are applicable to search in other contexts such as enterprise search or desktop search.

Part 1
In the first part of the talk, we describe existing and upcoming formats for embedding metadata inside Web content, including microformats, RDFa, and microdata. We illustrate these formats with practical examples, show some of the tools that can help authoring and give guidance on best practices and point out some of the pitfalls in annotating Web pages, drawing on our experience from working with large web publishers.

Part 2
In the second part, we discuss how semantic annotations are being used to improve the search experience for Web users. We introduce Yahoo's SearchMonkey platform and build a simple SearchMonkey application. We show ways to access the metadata indexed by Yahoo through the use of the BOSS API (Build Your Own Search Service) and the YQL (Yahoo Query Language) service. We also compare Yahoo's SearchMonkey platform to Google's Rich Snippet's effort. We close by discussing some of the open challenges in building semantic search engines on the Web.

9:00AM - 12:00AM: Tutorial
12:00PM - 1:00PM: Lunch
1:00PM - 4:00PM: Tutorial
4:30PM - 6:30PM: Networking at North by Northwest

We are really looking forward to this event and hopefully you are too! We have more suprises for the Austin community, so stay tuned!

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