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(Late) notes from ISWC 2008

I've eventually found time to review the notes from the last International Semantic Web Conference conference and put them in a clean document. Yes, it's a bit late, but I like to put this here and maybe someone will still find it interesting.

If you like the longer reading, please see the slides below. If you're looking for just short impressions, I can summarize them as follows.

  • The future web is a mix of W3C "heavy" technologies (i.e.: formal, precise, useful for reasoning, but cumbersome, hard to use) and other related stuff, such as mash-ups, social networking things, or technologies like JSON or Exhibit. The SW layer cake will probably become a reference architecture, like ISO/OSI or CORBA, hardly we will see applications with all the layers implemented. And, by the way, OWL is good and ever popular, but not perfect for all (see the panel).
  • SW still looks like a mostly academic topic. Yes, there were few good European companies there, but much more theoretical papers, or tools for SW software development, rather than concrete/industrial applications.
  • Life Sciences domain is a niche with its peculiarities. For instance, some aspects, such as high formalization with ontologies, fine control of privacy, are particularly important in this field. Moreover, the impression is that the SW potential for the LS is still quite unexplored.

 Oh! Last thing: it is really cool that most of the conference, including the tutorials, was recorded and published on line! And this include posters and demos too.

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