Semantic Web: How Can We Make Semantic Web Usable?



  • Topic: How Can We Make Semantic Web Usable?
    The Semantic Web has been emerging over several decades but has yet to reach a stage where it is easily accessible, useable and beneficial to the majority of end-users on the Web.  Everyone still ask the same question: How will the Semantic Web become useable? In the first presentation, Nova Spivack, CEO of Radar Networks, will discuss his outlook for the coming years as the Semantic Web begins to mature, and the stages it will go through. He will also discuss barriers to adoption and how to overcome them, and how forward-looking organizations can start working with the Semantic Web today. In addition he will discuss how the Semantic Web can benefit key application categories from advertising to e-commerce to search, publishing, collaboration and entertainment.
    In the second presentation, Holger Knublauch, VP of Product Development from TopQuatrant, will introduce to you the building blocks of a usable semantic web: RDF, RDFS, OWL, SPARQL and SWRL. These languages provide distributed and federated capabilities for resolving semantic differences between systems and databases. After the hands-on introduction to these powerful languages using TopBraid semantic development platform, he will demonstration how ontology-driven applications can be integrated with Web 2.0 technologies.


    Nova Spivack, CEO, Radar Networks
    Nova Spivack is one of the leading voices of the emerging Semantic Web, often referred to as Web 3.0.  Nova founded Radar Networks to develop semantic social software. In 1994, Nova co-founded EarthWeb (IPO 1998). Nova has worked at Individual, Xerox/Kurzweil, Thinking Machines, and also with SRI International on the DARPA CALO program and nVention. Nova founded Lucid Ventures, and co-founded the San Francisco Web Innovators Network.  As a grandson of management guru Peter F. Drucker, Nova shares his grandfather’s interests in the evolution of knowledge work. He has a BA in Philosophy from Oberlin College and did graduate study at the International Space University. In 1999 Nova flew to the edge of space in Russia with Space Adventures. Nova blogs at Minding the Planet.

    Holger Knublauch, VP, Product Development, TopQuadrant
    Dr. Holger Knublauch is well known in the Semantic Web community as the designer and developer of ProtÉgÉ-OWL. At TopQuadrant he is responsible for ontology development tools. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Ulm in Germany, 2002.  Dr. Knublauch's work in Germany was has resulted in the development of various clinical information systems, as well as in pragmatic design and implementation techniques for these and similar systems. As a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at Stanford Medical Informatics at the Stanford University Holger was responsible for research and  development of various components of the knowledge modeling tool ProtÉgÉ including Protege OWL, UML interfaces and interoperability with a Meta Object Facility (MOF) format.  He now is the lead developer of TopQuadrant's TopBraid product suite that includes the leading professional ontology development tool TopBraid Composer as well as the rich internet application platform TopBraid Live.  Holger actively participates in the World Wide Web Consortium’s Semantic Web Best Practices Working Group on developing guidance for building Semantic Web applications.

    Moderator Bios:
    AJ Chen, Ph.D., Sr. Search Engineer,

    Dr. Chen is an advocate of semantic web and digital health. Currently a Sr. Search Engineer at, he applies ontology and knowledge base for developing search engine focusing on consumer healthcare. Working with various open communities and open source software, he is also experimenting new and practical approaches that help make semantic data web a reality, including coordinating the scientific publishing task force for W3C’s Semantic Web HCLS Group. Previously, Dr. Chen had developed genome sequencing technologies for the vision of personalized medicine, playing technical and product roles at Hyseq, Callida Genomics, and Complete Genomics.  Earlier, Dr. Chen worked with Nobel Prize winner Dr. Barry Marshall to introduce new disease treatments and diagnostics to China. Dr. Chen earned his Ph. D. in Biochemistry from U. of Utah and did postdoctoral research at Duke Medical School.

    Jeffrey Pollock, Senior Director, Oracle Fusion Middleware
    Mr. Pollock is a technology leader and author of the enterprise software book "Adaptive Information" (John Wiley & Sons 2004). Currently a Senior Director with Oracle’s Fusion Middleware group, Mr. Pollock was formerly an independent consultant for the Defense Department, Vice President of Technology at Cerebra and Chief Technology Officer of Modulant, developing semantic middleware platforms and inference-driven SOA platforms from 2001 to 2006. Throughout his career, he has architected, designed, and built application server/middleware solutions for Fortune 500 and US Government clients. Prior to Modulant, Mr. Pollock was a Principal Engineer with Modem Media and Senior Architect with Ernst & Young’s Center for Technology Enablement. He is also a frequent speaker at industry conferences, author for industry journals, active member of W3C and OASIS, and formerly an engineering instructor with University of California at Berkeley’s Extension on the subjects of object-oriented systems, software development process and enterprise systems architecture.


    Event Logistics



    Cubberly Community Center
    4000 Middlefield Road, Room H-1
    Palo Alto, CA 94105

    6:30pm  - 7:00pm   Registration / Networking / Refreshments / Pizza
    7:00pm – 7:10pm   Community announcement
    7:10pm  -  7:50pm  Introduction to OMG and MDA with new ODM specifications
    7:50pm  -  8:30pm  In depth review of how OWL plays a central role in future MDA work
    8:30pm  -  9:00pm  Dedicated Q&A period


    $15 at the door for non-SDForum members
    No charge for SDForum members
    No registration required