Thursday, September 27, 2007

CSSW 2007 - Conf. on Social Semantic Web in Leipzig, Sep. 27th 2007 - Day 02

The second day of the Social Semantic Web Conference (CSSW 2007 here in Leipzig. Fortunately, Weimar has a rather good train connection to Leipzig (approx. 55 minutes...). Thus, I can sleep at home and don't have to stay in a hotel in Leipzig (and ofcourse the costs for travelling will be we have a very low budget at the University for conference travells). Ok, first thing I had to learn was, the conference catering isn't really as bad as I had written yesterday. Actually, you get 5 tickets for refreshments every day (not for the whole conference). Thus, you won't die of thirst ;-)
(the Picture above is showing the University of Leipzig, Jahn Campus, where CSSW 2007 together with SABRE07 takes place)

But, back to the conference program. Today, I will chair the first session and therefore, I'm not able to blog live (at least during the morning). But I will write about the talks as soon as I find some spare time. The following talks are scheduled: Patrick Maué from the University of Münster with the topic 'Collaborative Metadata for Geographic Information'. Patrick is addressing so called participatory Geographic Information Systems (GIS) that are used for decision making, as e.g. in urban planning. Usually this data is published as a catalogue on the web. But, queries to this catalogue suffer of very bad recall and precision. This also comes from the dicersity of people involved in the process of generating metadata. People have different perspective, mental models, and terminology. Thus, the general problem being addressed is refinement of shared metadata. Of the three diffeent levels of semantics ( implicit semantics whic means data gathered from statistical analysis of the original data, soft semantics such as e.g. folksonomies, and formal semantics that allow proper reasoning), Patrick addresses the gap between implicit and soft semantics, and tries to bridge this gap by detecting similarities of metadata.

The following talk by Thomas Riechert has the title'Mapping Cognitive Models to Social Spaces - Lightweight Collaborative Development of Project Ontologies'. There, an application of the SoftWiki ontology for requirement analysis (SWORE) in the software development process is presented. Software development is carried out collaboratively by the different stakeholders of the process with the goal to model an application on an abstract level from different points of view. Stakeholders formulate their requirements in natural language and use the SoftWiki for coordination and aggregation of the requirement model, the project model, and the bug model. Then, stakeholders tag the requirements and from the tags the system extracts relationships between requirements that finally end up in the project model (=project ontology). The content of the three models serves as input to the Software Development process (a.k.a. CASE-Tool), which maps the models to UML and in this way creates the input data for the software developers.

Sören Auer (also co-chair of the conference) concludes the session with a talk on'DBpedia Relationship Finder'. Firt at al, DBpedia is an interesting project that makes use of the (inherent) structured data in wikipedia. This structured data can be found in so called 'info-boxes', i.e. tables usually put in a columns right of the wikipedia article containing data in a well structured (and hopefully commonly agreed) format. This data can be extracted from the wikipedia dump. The structured data is transformed into RDF-Triples that constitute a huge graph. The goal of DBpedia is (in the end) to enable the user to ask complex queries on the structured wikipedia data. The general problem anyway is to visualize this huge amount of data in an efficient way. The relationship finder tries to draw connections between two terms in DBpedia and therefore traverses the DBpedia graph trying to find paths (via different properties being specified by extracted content the original wikipedia info-boxes). These paths are presented in shortest path first order. Up to now, no ranking of paths with similar length is performed. Interesting thing to mention ist that the terms 'Leipzig' and 'Semantic Web' are connected via the property of Leipzig being the city, where Johann Sebastian Bach died ;-)
To get more information, you can exclude certain properties from the result paths (i.d. then only paths, which don't include that specific property are included).

The upcoming session is focusses on presentations around the SoftWiki project (as also was the talk of Thomas Riechert in the first session). The following talks are scheduled: Kim Lauenroth is presenting 'A Processmodel for Wiki-based Requirements Engineering Supported by Semantic Web Technologies', followed by Haiko Cyriaks with 'Supporting Requirements Elicitation by Semantic Preprocessing of Document Collections', followed by Steffen Lohmann with 'Ways of Participation and Development of Shared Understanding in Distributed Requirements Engineering', and Thomas Riechert with 'Towards Semantic Based Requirements Engineering'.

The Session after the lunch break starts with Stefan Kröger from the University of Potsdam with 'Analysing Wiki-based Networks with SONIVIS. The main goal of the Project SONIVIS is (or at least one of the goals...) the Unterstanding of Emergence of Knowledge in Social Knowledge Spaces. As a tool, SONIVIS integrates analysis, evaluation, visualization, and data handling of wiki-based networks.
Rainer Hammwöhner from the University of Regensburg is next talking about 'Semantic Wikipedia -- Checking the Premisses'. For this reason, they took samples from (different multilingual versions of) wikipedia and tested, as e.g., if the wikipedia category system really is a sound taxonomy (...I would say 'no'!). As we already have thought, the category system makes inadequate use of hierarchies, and that the quality of different language versions varies. There seems to be a high amount of disagreement in the category systems of the different language versions.
Joshua Bacher from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology is giving a Demo Talk on 'BoWiki' - a collaborative editor for biomedical ontologies, gene functions and annotations (originally derived from Semantic MediaWiki, but for being able to use reasoning SMW was given up).
The next demo is given by Marc Fleischmann entitled sMeet-Let's Meet real, a web platform to talk and to sozialice (in an synchronous way) just as in real life. sMeet constitutes a 3D Avatar based virtual community (just as 2nd Live), but connects the virtual world with the phone system....(really an entertaining presentation, I even saw my very first live iPhone...But, I`m missing semantics....). The phone system enables real mobility (a kind of ambient 2nd Live....and the phone system is also something that people are used to pay for) and with sMeet several heterogeneous communities are (at least planned) to be connected.
Richard Cyganiak closes the session with a presentation on 'DBpedia - a Nucleus for a Web of Open Data' providing more background information on the DBpedia project. In DBpedia, every item has an own URI. Simply take the wikipedia URI of an article and substitute '' by '' (here you might find the DBpedia resource named 'Leipzig'). Thus, DBpedia becomes a repository for Semantic Web identifiers.

The final event of today (before the conference diner) was a panel discussion on the topic 'Is there a Social Semantic Web?', in which I took part (therefore no live-blogging). I will refer to that in my next post....