JAN 18th 2007

Last night I had an interesting conversation with an online acquaintance about the Semantic Web. I was surprised to find that the mere mention of the name "Semantic Web" sent him into a 5 minute rant about how much he disliked everything to do with it. His biggest qualm was with what he considered to be the empty promises made by proliferators and supporters of the Semantic Web. One example promise was that the Web would be transformed into an artificial intelligence that will think and act independently from humans.

I would like to take the time to give my views of the Semantic Web and what it can and will hold in store for us. The artificial intelligence that some people speak of is a "weak AI," a fabric of interwoven ontologies and vocabularies that allow us to map the entire Web to simulate the thought process of deriving meaning from documents.

I do believe that the Semantic Web will eventually help bring about new efforts and progress in the field of artificial intelligence as natural language processing becomes a more important part of our everyday lives, but I do not consider the Semantic Web a true artificial intelligence, nor do I believe that would be entirely beneficial.

If nothing else, the Semantic Web will be a place where all data is standardized, exchanged, interoperable, easily examinable against other data, and interconnected by meaning.

About the author

James Simmons

It's my goal to help bring about the Semantic Web. I also like to explore related topics like natural language processing, information retrieval, and web evolution. I'm the primary author of Semantic Focus and I'm currently working on several Semantic Web projects.

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