Semantic Web---Hear the Online Future

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                                                             Created by Eser Torun

Imagine a virtual world where "ask and you shall receive" can be interpreted literally. Here, when you ask for a weather report, a friendly voice might tell you it's partly sunny and 30 degrees. Or you might find out whether your stock portfolio is in the clouds or in the dumps just by asking for a Nasdaq report.

I believe that the next wave of internet development will fundamentally alter the way we share data, and voice will be at the heart of that transformation.

Today the web is focused on the document. The semantic web, the next generation of the technology, will be about the well-defined representation of data to enable users to compare and share data on different websites automatically and without human intervention. Currently World Wide Web Consortium is working on this technology and if it really meets exepctations, the semantic web will be exciting. It will interconnect things that cannot be done now and we will not need to use silly languages. Vendors and carriers have already begun to recruit solution providers, especially those with the resources and expertise to build effective voice Web practices.

At the heart of the semantic web is the Resource Description Framework, this standard is expected to be as familiar as HTML or XML. RDF will be core and a rules-based system around this core, is going to be developed.

The integration of the semantic web with web services will revolutionise the way we use data. It will be used interface with the web — a trend being driven by a proliferation of different devices. It used to be very convenient when we all used computers. But now we do not share a common state so we will use voice a lot more.

Voice will be a big challenge for web development. Voice technology has been promised for so long. It is now more usable, however related efforts are still going on in order to describe a dialogue in semantic way. For example, describing in a semantic web way what we will order from the pizza delivery site.

At this stage in the speech-recognition efforts, we're like the Web was back in early 1990s...No one is fullly able to anticipate the future of voice web applications. But that will be changing very soon, especially as things become more standardized in this space...And we will hear the online information!