July 17, 2006
As concluded in my previous post there’s an exponetial growth in the amount of user-generated content (videos, blogs, photos, P2P content, etc).
The enormous amount of free content available today is just too much for the current “dumb search” technology that is used to access it.
I believe that content is now a commodity and the next layer of value is all about “Intelligent Findability.”
Take my blog for example, it’s less than 60 days old, and I’ve never blogged before, but as of today it already has ~500 RSS daily subscribers (and growing), with a noticeable increase after the iPod post I made 3 days ago, 6,281 incoming links (according to MSN) and ~70,000 page views in total so far (mostly due to the Wikipedia 3.0 post, which according to Alexa.com reached an estimated ~2M people.) That demonstrates the potential of blogs to generate and spread lots of content.
So there is a lot of blog-generated content (if you consider how many bloggers are out there) and that doesn’t even include the hundreds of thousands (or millions?) of videos and photos uploaded daily to YouTube, Google Video, Flickr and all those other video and photo sharing sites. It also doesn’t include the 30% of total Internet bandwidth being sucked up by BitTorrent clients.
There’s just too much content and no seriously effective way to find what you need. Google is our only hope for now but Google is rudimentary compared to the vision of Semantic-Web Info Agents expressed in the Wikipedia 3.0 and Web 3.0 articles.
We’d like to embed “Intelligent Findability” into a blogging application so that others will be able to get the most of the information, ideas and analyses we generate.
If you do a search right now for “cool consumer idea” you will not get the iPod post. Instead you will get this post, but that is because I’m specifically making the association between “cool consumer idea” and “iPod” in this post.
Google tries to get around the debilitating limitation of keyword-based search engine technology in the same way by letting people associate phrases or words with a given link. If enough people linked to the iPod post and put the words “cool consumer idea” in the link then when searching Google for “cool consumer idea” you will see the iPod post. However, unless people band together and decide to call it a “cool consumer idea” it won’t show up in the search results. You would have to enter something like “portable music application” (which is actually one of the search results that showed up on my WordPress dashboard today.)
Using Semantic MediaWiki (which allows domain experts to embed semantic annotations into the information) I could insert semantic annotations to semantically link concepts in the information on this blog that would build an ontology that defines semantic relationships between terms in the information (i.e. meaning) where “iPod” would be semantically related to “product” which would be semantically related to “consumer electronics” and where the sentence Portable Music Studio would be semantically related (through use of annotations) to “vision”, “idea”, “concept”, “entertainment”, “music”, “consumer electronics”, “mp3 player” and so on, while the “iPod” would be also semantically related to “cool” (as in what is “cool”?) Thus, using rules of inference for my domain of knowledge I should able to deliver an intelligent search capability that deductively reasons the best match to a search query, based on matching the deduced meanings (represented as semantic graphs) from the user’s query and the information.
The quality of the deductive capability would depend on the consistency and completeness of the semantic annotations and the pan-domain or EvolvingTrends-domain ontology that I would build, among other factors. But generally speaking, since the ontology and the semantic annotations would be built by me if we think alike (or have a fairly similar semantic model of the world) then you will not only be able to read my blog but you will be able to read my mind. The idea is that, with my help in supplying the semantic annotations, such system will be able to deduce possible meaning (as a graph of semantic relationships) out of each sentence in the post and respond to search queries by reasoning about meaning rather than matching keywords.
This is possible with Semantic MediaWiki (which is under development) However, in this particular instance, I don’t want a Semantic Wiki. I want a Semantic Blog. But that should be just a simple step away.
- Wikipedia 3.0: The End of Google?
- Towards Intelligent Findability
- Web 3.0: Basic Concepts
- Intelligence (Not Content) is King in Web 3.0
- Semantic MediaWiki
- Open Source Your Mind
- iPod as a Portable Music Studio
Posted by Marc Fawzi
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