June 04, 2003

Semantic web low-hanging fruit

Finally got round to reading Jon Udell's recent posting of his slides from OSCOM.

Really good discussion of why document titles and URLs should be thought about, and how they're used in search engines, and suchlike.

I particularly like this suggestion of how threading of discussions could be done.

Then he goes back to an old, old concept, the universal canvas - something I remember reading when Jon first wrote about it, and hoping we were getting to the point where the web was read/write rather than read-only. Weblogs are making it easier to write to the web, but I'm still having to add a lot of angled brackets whilst writing this :-( Not exactly as easy as using a word processor, but maybe that's because we've got "View -> Source". All the purist techies look at the HTML generated by things such as Microsoft Word, and go *yuk*, but it's difficult to produce perfect output by machine (I think, I haven't done any exhaustive investigation into this :-) The annoying thing is that it shouldn't really matter if the output isn't perfect, if it's good enough(tm). I know plenty of people who've bitched that the MS Word document format is bloated, but because it's gobbledigook they never spend time working out where it could be better, and just use it (and so millions of other, non-techies who couldn't care less about the hows and whys and wherefores, can also use it do achieve their ends).

Maybe I should add "the read/write web browser" to my growing list of "projects I'd like to build"... although I will check that my document titles and URLs are useful (finally we reach the low-hanging fruit of the title :-)

Posted by Adrian at June 4, 2003 03:16 PM | TrackBack

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