Linked Data

Linking Open Data cloud diagram, by Richard Cyganiak and Anja Jentzsch.

Linked Data is about using the Web to connect related data that wasn’t previously linked, or using the Web to lower the barriers to linking data currently linked using other methods. It’s often used as to describe a recommended best practice for exposing, sharing, and connecting pieces of data, information, and knowledge on the Semantic Web. This is a leading edge area, still driven to a large extent by the academic community, but it’s also a natural evolution of the well-established practices in Taxonomy and Ontology, with many companies already effectively incorporating linked-data into their products and processes.

The Smart Content effort now under way at Elsevier is to extract information from existing text and combining it with additional data to provide readers with new ways of understanding the facts and ideas current in their subject areas. The BBC makes details of all of it’s programs available using linked data as well as extensive linked data feeds that operate across all of their data. The New York Times makes over 10,000 headings available as  linked data. These as well as numerous smaller companies are making linked data and the semantic web areas that should be watched and in some cases actually used by small to medium sized companies in the information world.

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