Home | News & Events | Events | 2014 Events | NISO Virtual Conferences | February 19: The Semantic Web Coming of Age: Technologies and Implementations

NISO Virtual Conference: The Semantic Web Coming of Age: Technologies and Implementations

February 19, 2014
11:00 - 5:00 p.m. (Eastern Time)

System Requirements:

  • NISO has developed a quick tutorial, How to Participate in a NISO Web Event. Please view the recording, which is an overview of the web conferencing system and will help to answer the most commonly asked questions regarding participating in an online Webex event.
  • You will need a computer for the presentation and Q&A.
  • Audio is available through the computer (broadcast) and by telephone. We recommend you have a set-up for telephone audio as back-up even if you plan to use the broadcast audio as the voice over Internet isn't always 100% reliable.
  • Please check your system in advance to make sure it meets the Cisco WebEx requirements. It is your responsibility to ensure that your system is properly set up before each webinar begins. 

About the Virtual Conference

The Semantic Web, the phrase coined by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, envisioned the Internet as a common framework of data that can be shared across numerous platforms. Libraries and publishers are among those leading the charge with projects and initiatives aimed at making information and resources more widely available in the greater web of data.

This virtual conference will look at the challenges and opportunities available through the Semantic Web, highlighting applications, projects, and initiatives that are changing the way libraries and publishers structure their metadata and improve the accessibility of their content.


11:00 a.m. – 11:10 a.m. – Introduction
Todd Carpenter, Executive Director, NISO

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11:10 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Keynote Address
Ramanathan V. Guha, Google Fellow; Founder of Schema.org

Ramanathan V. Guha is a Google Fellow currently working on web search and machine intelligence. He was a principal scientist at Apple, and a principal engineer at Netscape, where he created the first version of RSS. He cofounded Epinions, and has been a researcher at IBM Almaden Research Center. Guha joined Google in May of 2005. There, he started Custom Search, Search based keyword tool, SMS Channels. He is the founder of Schema.org, collaboration between the major search engines, which provides a structured markup vocabulary, which is currently used by over 15% of the pages on the web.

Guha graduated with a B.Tech (Mechanical Engineering) from Indian Institute of Technology Madras, MS in Mechanical Engineering from University of California, Berkeley and Ph.D in Computer Science from Stanford University.

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12:00 p.m. - 12:45 p.m.: The W3C Semantic Web Initiative
Ralph Swick, Domain Lead of the Information and Knowledge Domain at W3C

Ralph joined W3C in January 1997, to focus on the Privacy and Demographics project. As that project (now called P3P) was starting, Ralph also started the Metadata project. The Resource Description Framework became a full-time responsibility when the Metadata Activity turned into the Semantic Web Activity. In 2007 Ralph became the leader of the Technology and Society Domain and in 2009 was appointed Acting Chief Operating Officer. As of 2010 the 'acting' qualfier was removed. Ralph came to us from the X Consortium, where he was Technical Director for the X Window System. Ralph brings to W3C both a systems background and an application background. Long involved with the X Window System, Ralph was one of the architects of the Xt Intrinsics (user interface) toolkit. Prior to joining the X Consortium, Ralph was a software engineer for Digital Equipment Corporation in their Office Systems Advanced Development Group. There he worked on information filtering tools (software agents) and computer-supported cooperative work tools. Before that, Ralph was in Digital's Corporate Research Group working at MIT Project Athena.

Ralph holds a BS in Physics and Mathematics from Carnegie-Mellon University. Ralph's interests are in applications of Web technologies to support human-human interaction, especially over time and distance.

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12:45 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. Lunch Break

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1:30 p.m. - 2:15 p.m. Semantic Web Applications in Libraries: The Road to BIBFRAME
Kevin Ford, Network Development & MARC Standards Office, Library of Congress

Beginning around 2008, libraries started focusing their resources on publishing their authority data as Linked Data, which is an application of the Semantic Web. Most notably, persons, organizations, places, and concepts were given HTTP URIs, meaning that not only was information about persons, organizations, places, and concepts accessible via the Web, but also the identifiers – the HTTP URIs – could be used in the descriptions of other resources. This was a vital first step since those URIs would be essential to efficiently describing and publishing bibliographic resources as Linked Data, which some libraries started once the foundation had been established with the authority data. This presentation will track this brief history, culminating in a short introduction to the Library of Congress’s Bibliographic Framework (BIBFRAME) Initiative which will ultimately replace the Library’s stalwart but outmoded communication format with a solution based on semantic web technologies.

Kevin Ford works in the Network Development and MARC Standards Office at the Library of Congress where he is a member of the six-member internal LC group shepherding the Library’s Bibliographic Framework Initiative, which will ultimately replace the MARC Communication Formats with a Linked Data model. Kevin is also the current project manager for the Library of Congress's Linked Data service, http://id.loc.gov. Among many other authority files and value lists, LC’s Linked Data Service publishes the LC Name Authority File; LC Subject Headings; Thesaurus of Graphic Materials; and a number of MARC lists and ISO languages. Kevin spends a significant amount of time modeling traditional library data in RDF for publication at ID and consulting within the Library on other vocabulary-related issues, and he regularly follows Linked Data and Semantic Web developments for LC. He participated in the W3C's Library Linked Data Incubator Group.

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2:15 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.The Social Data Graph: The Friend of a Friend (FOAF) Project
Henry Story, Chief Technical Officer & Co-founder at Stample

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3:00 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. Afternoon Break

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3:15 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Sharing Information on the Semantic Web: The Need for a Global License Repository
Pierre-Paul Lemyre, Director of Business Development, Lexum

The development of dedicated licensing schemes has been crucial in the coming of age of the first two global waves of distributed production of information: the General Public License (GPL) enabled open source software (OSS) to take over the IT industry, and the Creative Commons (CC) licenses played a similar role in the success of Web 2.0 technologies. These past experiences show that one of the challenge to overcome for the semantic web to achieve equivalent outreach might not reside in the technology itself. Instead, the efficient management of rights may, more than anything else, be the key unlocking the large-scale distributed reuse of information.

Pierre-Paul Lemyre is a lawyer and one of the founders of Lexum, a legal technology firm providing web-based solutions for the management and dissemination of legal information. His field of expertise lies where legal information and technology meet. Over the last decade he contributed to position Lexum as the leading Canadian online provider of legal information and a serious player on the international stage. He is highly interested in the challenges of lasting development, being regularly involved in international projects aiming to improve access to legal information. He is also recognized as an expert on legal issues related to free and open source software.

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3:45 p.m. - 4:15 p.m. Semantic Web Applications in Publishing 
Bob Du Charme, Director of Digital Media Solutions, TopQuadrant

Bob Du Charme is the Director of Digital Media Solutions at TopQuadrant, a leading software company in the Semantic Web world. He is also the author of three books: XSLT Quickly (Manning Publications, 2001) and XML: The Annotated Specification (Prentice Hall, 1998) and the latest, Learning SPARQL (O'Reilly Media, 2013).

Bob has a BA in religion from Columbia University and received his masters in computer science from New York University's Courant Institute.

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4:15 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Conference Roundtable: Services that Build on Others Semantic Web Data: Semantic Search Beyond RDF
Moderated by: Todd Carpenter, Executive Director, NISO

Event Slides

Note: The top slide deck includes presentation slides from: Ramanathan Guha, Pierre-Paul Lemyre, and Bob DuCharme.



If paying by credit card, register online.

If paying by check, please use this PDF form.

Registration closes on February 18, 2014 at 4:00 pm Eastern.

Registration Costs

Additional Information


  • NISO Member
    • $185.00 (US and Canada)
    • $225.00 (International)
  • Non-Member
    • $245.00 (US and Canada)
    • $285.00 (International)
  • Student
    • $80.00
  • Registration closes at 4:00 pm (ET) on February 18, 2014. Cancellations made by February 12, 2014 will receive a refund, less a $35 cancellation. After that date, there are no refunds.
  • Registrants will receive detailed instructions about accessing the virtual conference via e-mail the Friday prior to the event. (Anyone registering between Monday and the close of registration will receive the message shortly after the registration is received, within normal business hours.) Due to the widespread use of spam blockers, filters, out of office messages, etc., it is your responsibility to contact the NISO office if you do not receive login instructions before the start of the webinar.
  • If you have not received your Login Instruction email by 10AM (ET) on the Tuesday before the webinar, please contact the NISO office or email Juliana Wood, Educational Programs Manager at jwood@niso.org for immediate assistance.
  • Registration is per site (access for one computer) and includes access to the online recorded archive of the conference. You may have as many people as you like from the registrant's organization view the conference from that one connection. If you need additional connections, you will need to enter a separate registration for each connection needed.
  • If you are registering someone else from your organization, either use that person's e-mail address when registering or contact the NISO office to provide alternate contact information.
  • Conference presentation slides and Q&A will be posted to this event webpage following the live conference.
  • Registrants will receive an e-mail message containing access information to the archived conference recording within 48 hours after the event. This recording access is only to be used by the registrant's organization.