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Semantic Web Agents: Hope or Hype

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The Semantic Web and agent technologies are just old-fashioned artificial intelligence. ... system - without a human having to custom handcraft every connection. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Semantic Web Agents: Hope or Hype


1
Semantic Web Agents Hope or Hype
  • Nicholas Gibbins
  • School of Electronics and Computer Science
  • University of Southampton

2
The Cynics View
  • The Semantic Web and agent technologies are just
    old-fashioned artificial intelligence.
  • Artificial intelligence hasnt delivered on its
    previous promises, so why should it now?

3
What is the Semantic Web?
  • The Semantic Web is an extension of the current
    Web in which information is given a well-defined
    meaning, better enabling computers and people to
    work in cooperation.
  • It is the idea of having data on the Web defined
    and linked in a way that it can be used for more
    effective discovery, automation, integration and
    reuse across various applications.
  • The Web can reach its full potential if it
    becomes a place where data can be processed by
    automated tools as well as people.

W3C Activity Statement
4
Example Scientific American article
2001-05
The Semantic Web
dcdate
Tim Berners-Lee
vcardfn
dctitle
dccreator
James Hendler
vcardfn
aktpublishedIn
dccreator
Ora Lassila
vcardfn
dccreator
dctitle
Scientific American
Relation and object types aredefined in a
machine-understandableform an ontology
5
The Semantic Web layer cake
User Interface and Applications
Trust
Attribution
Proof
Explanation
Rules
OWL
SPARQL(queries)
Ontologies Inference
RDF Schema
RDF
Metadata
XML Namespaces
Standard syntax
URI
Unicode
Identity
6
The Semantic Web Hype Cycle
Semantic Webc. 2004
Visibility
TechnologyTrigger
Peak of InflatedExpectation
Trough ofDisillusionment
Slope ofEnlightenment
Plateau ofProductivity
Maturity
Gartner
7
Which Semantic Web?
  • Semantic Web as the Annotated Web
  • Enrich existing web pages with annotations
  • Classify web pages
  • Use natural language techniques to extract
    information from web pages
  • Annotations enable enhanced browsing and
    searching
  • (but NLP is hard)

8
Which Semantic Web?
  • Semantic Web as the Web of Data
  • Expose existing databases in a common format
  • Express database schemas in a machine-understandab
    le form
  • Common format allows the integration of data in
    unexpected ways
  • Machine-understandable schemas allow reasoning
    about data
  • (make the most of the structure you already have)

9
Rocket Science (not)
Is this rocket science? Well, not really. The
Semantic Web, like the World Wide Web, is just
taking well established ideas, and making them
work interoperably over the Internet. This is
done with standards, which is what the World Wide
Web Consortium is all about. We are not inventing
relational models for data, or query systems or
rule-based systems. We are just webizing them. We
are just allowing them to work together in a
decentralized system - without a human having to
custom handcraft every connection.
Tim Berners-Lee, Business Case for the Semantic
Web, http//www.w3.org/DesignIssues/Business
10
e-Science and the Semantic Web
  • e-Science characterised as
  • Large-scale science
  • Distributed global collaborations
  • Very large data collections
  • Very large scale computing resources
  • Data integration will be a major issue
  • Capture, publish, reuse data
  • Agreed vocabularies for data exchange

11
  • Improving the information environment for
    chemists both within and beyond the lab
  • Supporting chemists in the preparation,
    execution, analysis and dissemination of their
    work

http//www.smarttea.org/
12
Data Capture The Lab Notebook
13
(No Transcript)
14
(No Transcript)
15
Publish and Reuse
http//ecrystals.chem.soton.ac.uk
16
Exchange Vocabularies
  • BioPax Ontology (biological pathways)
  • Metabolic and signalling pathways, molecular
    interactions
  • Gene Ontology (genes and gene products)
  • Molecular function, cellular component,
    biological process
  • NCI Cancer Ontology
  • Diseases, drugs, anatomy, genes
  • (and many others from other disciplines)

17
What are Agents?
  • Many definitions of agent
  • Mobile agents
  • Collaborative agents
  • Social agents
  • Interface agents
  • Three broad perspectives
  • Agents as design metaphor
  • Agents as technology source
  • Agents as simulation

18
Agent Based Computing
  • Societies of components, owned by different
    organisations
  • Components provide services to each other
  • Computing as a social activity
  • Workflows and Planning
  • Coordination, Collaboration and Negotiation
  • Markets and auctions
  • Models of trust and reputation
  • Managing the distributed processing of data

19
The Agent Hype Cycle
Agentsc. 1995
Visibility
Agentsc. 2005
TechnologyTrigger
Peak of InflatedExpectation
Trough ofDisillusionment
Slope ofEnlightenment
Plateau ofProductivity
Maturity
20
Whats different this time?
  • First agent wave assumed that a special agent
    infrastructure was needed
  • Hindered integration with existing systems
  • Several high-profile failures in the marketplace
  • Second agent wave is building on existing
    technologies such as Web Services
  • Incremental approach that integrates existing
    systems
  • Can be aligned with related work on Grid Computing

21
Grid Computing
  • e-Science applications typically have very high
    computational requirements
  • Grid Computing provides an infrastructure for
  • Flexible, secure, coordinated resource sharing
  • Dynamic collections of individuals, institutions
    and resources
  • Virtual organisations
  • Workflow management
  • Social computing, in effect

22
http//www.combechem.org/
23
http//www.mygrid.org.uk
24
The Next Generation Grid
  • The ongoing convergence between Grids, Web
    Services and the Semantic Web is a fundamental
    step towards the realisation of a common
    service-oriented architecture empowering people
    to create, provide, access and use a variety of
    intelligent services, anywhere, anytime, in a
    secure, cost-effective and trustworthy way.

Next Generation Grids 2 Requirements and Options
for European Grids Research 2005-2010 and
Beyond EU Expert Group Report July 2004
25
The Semantic Grid
  • Grid Computing Semantic Web
  • Information and services are given a well-defined
    meaning
  • Uses SW technologies OWL, RDF, etc
  • Ontologies for describing services
  • Better enables computers and peopleto work in
    cooperation
  • Requires coordination and planning capabilities
    found in agent technologies

26
Hope or Hype?
  • Web Services and Grid Computing are already a
    reality
  • The Semantic Web is being used in large-scale
    e-Science applications
  • Agent technology is approaching maturity, and
    offers management of rich patterns of interaction
    in service-oriented systems

27
Thank you!
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