Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Google Goes Semantic?

[Note: I just posted this info over at my genealogy wiki blog, Lowville Long Ago. Normally I don't repost verbatim from one of my blogs to the other but I feel this information is just too important]

If this is true and if it holds, this is hot stuff:

Google appears to be exposing semantic data in its searches. The concepts of semantic forms and semantic data is one that is close to my heart. I feel that genealogy applications should be more than just looking up articles - it should be a highly advanced way of organizing and managing data and rendering results.

It appears that Google is taking its usual search results and then parsing out the semantic data. Example: enter What was Karl's Marx's Birthdate in the search field and this is what you get:

Sweet, no? According to a post on Read, Write, Web, it appears that Google may have been performing this function for quite while but there have been recent refinements to results when you use a "subject - predicate - object" format for your searches.

Many web and tech gurus are predicting that semantic data is a core component of Web 3.0 and I agree. I also believe that this is where genealogy database software and websites will need to go: allowing users more than just looking up data. These applications and sites will need to offer the ability to see relationships between data, between people.