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   Re: Success factors for the Web and Semantic Web

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  • From: Jonathan Borden <jborden@mediaone.net>
  • To: "Simon St.Laurent" <simonstl@simonstl.com>, xml-dev <xml-dev@lists.xml.org>
  • Date: Thu, 21 Dec 2000 13:53:18 -0500

Simon St.Laurent wrote:
> Or maybe I just prefer a worse-is-better approach of slowly stumbling
> toward a fragmented but practical semantic web rather than a directed
> toward the Semantic Web.  Since I strongly suspect that 'semantic web'
> not equal 'Semantic Web', I may be missing the point, but I'm certainly
> doing so deliberately.

I'd say this is just about right. The types of applications of the 'semantic
web' (lowercase) tend to be domain specific/knowledge intensive rather than
mass market. Healthcare is an example but clearcut and palpable benefit
needs to be proven before any such technology will be widely adopted . This
can be a simple as using HTML forms which generate data in a controlled
vocabulary, and demonstrating how data in such a controlled vocabulary can
be easily transformed into something readable by humans (the converse is not
so simple).

In any case, just as the vast majority of people who browse web pages know
nothing about HTML, the vast majority of people who will use this technology
ought not need to know its internal workings: what they see is that if they
click here and here and here out jumps this report, and at the end of the
year look at this great data analysis.

Jonathan Borden
The Open Healthcare Group


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