Aug 2010 Semantic Mediawiki intro

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Wikis are commonly used for group content development. Semantic Mediawiki adds easier to use forms and the ability to annotate distinct content such as places, people and dates for reuse in interactive views and queries. In this session, we'll look at how semantic wikis can be used to develop content for indigenous and linguistic communities, with a practical, hands on focus including how to create pages, categories and simple ontologies. We will focus on processes to make sites inclusive, and examine fair terms of re-use.

See the follow-up Nov 2010 Practical Semantic Mediawiki.


[edit] Web

  • International
  • Focused on presentation
  • Anyone can create a site
    • Network effect
  • Hyperlinks

[edit] Wikis

  • Portland Pattern Repository - 1995

Allows easy, quick editing of any page, usually by anyone.

  • Types of wikis
    • Personal wiki
    • Group
    • Organization
    • Topical
    • ...

[edit] Wikipedia


  • 2001
  • Anything "notable" accepted, neutral point of view
  • Careful controls on legal issues so content can be re-used
  • Anyone who uses the Internet knows, uses, respects, understands it
  • Cultural translations
  • Few understand how it's edited
  • Designed to be open, but adding controls
  • More upcoming focus on media

[edit] Mediawiki

  • Free Software (GPL)
  • Hundreds of thousands of sites
  • Hundreds of extensions
  • Page, not content manager
  • Designed for open editing, can be closed

[edit] Wiki use and editing

On any wiki with critical mass:

  • Readers
  • Drive by editor
  • Topic editor
  • Nerd core
  • Typical process
    • Messes
    • Gardening

[edit] How to use a wiki

  • Editing - start with an outline

[edit] Editing wikis

  • Wikis typically use their own markup (syntax)
  • Rich/wysiwyg editors create messes
    • Typical word processors adding junk, can't re-use for headings, can't compare versions
    • No re-usable meaning added

[edit] Progressive learning


  • text - just enter it, with a blank line between paragraphs
  • = Heading 1 =
  • * Bullet point
  • [[Wiki link]]
  • View source to learn from others
  • Edit sections to compartmentalize changes

Brackets must be matched!!!!

[edit] Elements of markup

[edit] Semantic

  • Computers are not very good at understanding human language
  • Adding re-usable meaning through relationships.

  • Triples - expressing relationships
    • Subject, predicate, object

  • David lives in Montreal.
    • David: subject
    • Lives in: predicate
    • Montreal: object

  • Subject, predicate, object have their own relationships.
  • Montreal is a city.
  • A city is a place.
  • Montreal is the English word for Montréal.
  • What are the names for the place where the St Lawrence and Ottawa rivers meet ?

[edit] Web of data

smw.gif 200px-Parmenides.jpg

  • The text is the database.
  • Making statements across web sites.
  • Creating views based on multiple web sites.
  • Across wikipedia: Places with populations between 100 and 10,000 with a
  • Technical ontologies
    • Classes (categories) - person, place, date
    • Properties - birth date, birth place, current location, height
    • Inference
      • If a person (class) was born in Canada, they speak English or French
        • Guessiness
  • Usefully and easily combine different data sources - data network effects
    • Recipe from one site, ingredients from another
    • Web searches that only include precise content
    • Aggregate reviews from different sites

web 1 - x connecting social, knowledge, intelligence, information

On Social Learning, Sensemaking Capacity, and Collective Intelligence

[edit] Semantic Mediawiki

  • Practical way of adding semantic data to wikis (mediawiki)
  • Anyone can add semantic content
  • Inline properties (annotations) [[about::Semantic web]]
  • Ontologies - classes (categories and templates)
  • Queries
    • {{ #ask: [[about::Semantic web]] }}
    • {{ #ask: [[Category:Person]] | [[Location::Montreal]] }}
  • Forms
    • Make SMW much easier to use when entering field data
    • Inputs for different text types, date, file upload, geo location
  • Views

[edit] Hands on

  • Add a new class (category with properties, form)

[edit] Sites

[edit] Licensing

  • Creative commons designed to make content clearly reusable
    • CC-BY
    • No derivatives, no commercial
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