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   RE: [xml-dev] Semantic Web for the Masses, by the Masses

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"3. The semantic web must be self-regulating."
I ask again as I asked the W3C TAG in the context of a
self-descriptive system, what is this 'self' you are
referring to?  It is the value proposition of the information use
that determines the tool, not the medium of discovery or
If there is more information, there is more noise.   Noise implies filters.  
The implications depend on the context of use and any duties or obligations
explicitly assumed or implicitly consented to by use.
Tagging, folksonomies, metadata in leather pouches, are all good stuff
as long as the context of use is known and the risks of using the
semantics of the masses are assumed by the user.  I don't want to argue
the case for the 'wisdom of crowds' because again, too many cases made
for debugging code (a limited domain that has a third non-human player
called a computer) are being applied to information domains that have
legal implications with the assumption the technology is bridging a
trivial semantic gap that proves not to be trivial in practice.  (BTW: not
known apriori but established as used or in later review.)
Who is liable for false information, deliberate distortions, and mistakes of omission?
As long as the use is explicitly caveat emptor, this fine.   If the case becomes
respondeat superior or caveat vendor, this is not fine.
I think Wales is smart to make contributions to Wikipedia less anonymous.
Anonymous contributions to a resource should get the lowest credibility
if allowed at all. 
Because of gaming, sheer numbers as the basis of agreement to establish
a semantic are insufficient and ranking of authorities has to be dynamic. 
-----Original Message-----
From: Costello, Roger L. [mailto:costello@mitre.org]
Sent: Wednesday, January 11, 2006 10:08 AM
To: XML Developers List
Subject: [xml-dev] Semantic Web for the Masses, by the Masses

Semantic Web for the Masses, by the Masses
                Roger L. Costello
1. To enriched the Web with semantics will require everyone pitch in to add descriptions (semantics) to individual Web documents.
1.1 Semantics will not be added by semantic gurus, but, rather, by the common users.
      Example: A person (a common user) takes a JPG photo of a coastline, and then annotates it with this description:
                    "This is a picture of the New England coastline."
2. The barrier to entry must be low.  That is, the barrier to a common user adding a description (i.e., semantics) to a Web document must be low.
2.1 Complex ontology languages such as RDF and OWL are out of reach for all but the semantic gurus, and are thus not used.  Even "vanilla XML" is out of reach for the common user, and is thus not used.
2.2 A Web document is enriched with semantics by the common user simply writing a description, in a natural language such as English (see above for an example of a description).
3. The semantic web must be self-regulating.
3.1 A description that is written by one common user may be edited by another common user.  Presumably the later common user has more knowledge and is thus able to correct or add to the description.
     Example. A second person with further information edits the above description:
                   "This is a picture of the New England coastline, near the Boston harbor."
3.2 Common users regulate themselves - they ensure that all descriptions of a Web document are consistent.
4. The tool used by the common user to annotate a Web document with a description (semantics) must be lightweight.
4.1 A simple text box with a basic editor and versioning will suffice. 
5. Advanced semantic machine processing are services provided by a limited set of companies which employ Ph.D semantic gurus.
5.1 Company XYZ is one of those limited set of companies.  It employs Ph.D semantic gurus.  They write advanced code to process all the descriptions written by the common users.  They use RDF and OWL, if they desire.
Comments?  /Roger


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