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Chapter 4, Understanding Web Services. This chapter covers all aspects of current Web services and discusses the future direction of Web services. It explains how to discover, describe, and access Web services and the technologies behind those functions. It also provides concrete use cases for deploying Web services and answers the question "Why use Web services?" Lastly, it provides detailed description of advanced Web service applications to include orchestration and security. The chapter closes with a discussion of grid-enabled Web services and semantic-enabled Web services.
Chapter 5, Understanding the Resource Description Framework. This chapter explains what RDF is, the distinction between the RDF model and syntax, its features, why it has not been adopted as rapidly as XML, and why that will change. This chapter also introduces a new use case for this
The Semantic Web
technology called noncontextual modeling. The chapter closes with an explanation of data modeling using RDF Schema. The chapter stresses the importance of explicitly modeling relationships between data items.
Chapter 6, Understanding the Rest of the Alphabet Soup. This chapter rounds out the coverage of XML-related technologies by explaining XPATH, XSL, XSLT, XSLFO, XQuery, XLink, XPointer, XInclude, XML Base, XHTML, XForms, and SVG. Besides explaining the purpose of these technologies in a direct, clear manner, the chapter offers examples and makes judgments on the utility and future of each technology.
Chapter 7, Understanding Taxonomies. This chapter explains what taxonomies are and how they are implemented. The chapter builds a detailed understanding of taxonomies using illustrative examples and shows how they differ from ontologies. The chapter introduces an insightful concept called the Ontology Spectrum. The chapter then delves into a popular implementation of taxonomies called Topic Maps and XML Topic Maps (XTM). The chapter concludes with a comparison of Topic Maps and RDF and a discussion of their complementary characteristics.
Chapter 8, Understanding Ontologies. This chapter is extremely detailed and takes a slow, building-block approach to explain what ontologies are, how they are implemented, and how to use them to achieve semantic interoperability. The chapter begins with a concrete business example and then carefully dissects the definition of an ontology from several different perspectives. Then we explain key ontology concepts like syntax, structure, semantics, pragmatics, extension, and intension. Detailed examples of these are given including how software agents use these techniques. In explaining the difference between a thesaurus and ontology, an insightful concept is introduced called the triangle of signification. The chapter moves on to knowledge representation and logics to detail the implementation concepts behind ontologies that provide machine inference. The chapter concludes with a detailed explanation of current ontology languages to include DAML and OWL and offers judgments on the corporate utility of ontologies.
Chapter 9, Crafting Your Company's Roadmap to the Semantic Web. This chapter presents a detailed roadmap to leveraging the Semantic Web technologies discussed in the previous chapters in your organization. It lays the context for the roadmap by comparing the current state of information and knowledge management in most organizations to a detailed vision of a knowledge-centric organization. The chapter details the key processes of a knowledge-centric organization to include discovery and production, search and retrieval, and application of results (including information reuse). Next, detailed steps are provided to effect the change to a knowledge-centric organization. The steps include vision definition, training requirements,
technical implementation, staffing, and scheduling. The chapter concludes with an exhortation to take action.
This book is a comprehensive tutorial and strategy session on the new data revolution emerging today. Each chapter offers a detailed, honest, and authoritative assessment of the technology, its current state, and advice on how you can leverage it in your organization. Where appropriate, we have highlighted "maxims" or principles on using the technology.
Who Should Read This Book
This book is written as a strategic guide to managers, technical leads, and senior developers. Some chapters will be useful to all people interested in the Semantic Web; some delve deeper into subjects after covering all the basics. However, none of the chapters assumes an in-depth knowledge of any of the technologies.
While the book was designed to be read from cover to cover in a buildingblock approach, some sections are more applicable to certain groups. Senior managers may only be interested in the chapters focusing on the strategic understanding, business case, and roadmap for the Semantic Web (Chapters 1, 2, and 9). CIOs and technical directors will be interested in all the chapters but will especially find the roadmap useful (Chapter 9). Training managers will want to focus on the key Semantic Web technology chapters like RDF (Chapter 5), taxonomies (Chapter 7), and ontologies (Chapter 8) to set training agendas. Senior developers and developers interested in the Semantic Web should read and understand all the technology chapters (Chapters 3 to 8).