Ontolog Forum

SemanticWiki mini-series Session-3 - Thu 11-Dec-2008

  • Mini-series Title: Semantic Wikis: The Wiki Way to the Semantic Web
  • Session-3 Topic: Semantic Wiki Technology (2): MediaWiki, SemanticMediaWiki, Extensions, Add-on's and other Enhancements
  • Session Chair: Mr. MaxVoelkel (FZI, Karlsruhe, Germany)
  • Panelists:
    • Mr. MarkusKroetzsch (AIFB, Karlsruhe) - "SemanticMediaWiki (SMW)"
    • Mr. YaronKoren (independent software developer) - "Semantic Forms, Semantic Drilldown, Semantic Result Formats, Semantic Google Maps, Semantic Compound Queries and Data Transfer"
    • Mr. DanielHansch (ontoprise, Karlsruhe) & Dr. MarkGreaves (Vulcan) - "the SMW Halo extension & SMW+"
    • Dr. RaphaelVolz & Mr. PhilippZaltenbach (ontoprise, Karlsruhe) - "A Rules Prototype in SMW"
    • Mr. PeterYim (CIM3) & Professor KenBaclawski (NEU) - PMWX - "Fine-Grained Addressability in Purple MediaWiki and Purple SemanticMediaWiki"
    • Dr. JieBao, Dr. LiDing & Mr. ZhenningShangguan (RPI/TWC) - "Concept Modeling on SemanticMediaWiki"
  • Lightning Talks: - [ Please note that: in order for the community to be exposed to the full range of technologies, an IPR policy waiver is applicable to this ]
    • Dr. PeterHaase & Mr. DanielHerzig (AIFB, Karlsruhe) - "Ask the Wiki - An Approach for Semantic Search in SMW"

Conference Call Details

  • Date: Thursday, Dec. 11, 2008
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SemanticWiki mini-series Background

The Semantic Wiki mini-series a 6-month mini-series comprising Talks, Panel Discussions and Online Discourse. The series is co-organized by FZI Karlsruhe, Mayo Clinic, Ontolog, RPI Tetherless World Constellation and Salzburg Research, Austria. This represents a collaborative effort between members from academia, research, software engineering, semantic web and ontology communities. The 6-month mini-series intends to bring together developers, administrators and users of semantic wikis, and provide a platform where they can conveniently share ideas and insights. Through a series of (mainly virtual) talks, panel discussions, online discourse and even face-to-face meetings, participants will survey the state-of-the-art in semantic wiki technology and get exposure to exemplary use cases and applications. Together, they will study trends, challenges and the outlook for semantic wikis, and explore opportunities for collaboration in the very promising technology, approach or philosophy which people has labeled "semantic wiki."

This series of virtual events will dovetail into the face-to-face workshop: "Social Semantic Web: Where Web 2.0 Meets Web 3.0" at the AAAI Spring Symposium (March 23-25, 2009 at Stanford, California, USA - see: ).

See: our SemanticWiki mini-series homepage and the developing program for the rest of the series.

Agenda & Proceedings

Session Tile: MediaWiki, SemanticMediaWiki, Extensions, Add-on's and other Enhancements

Session Abstract

by MaxVoelkel

The purpose of this session is to introduce and present in depth the SemanticMediaWiki extension and the universe of extensions to this extension: What can be achieved with them and how data is used in them.
  • Talk 1 (15 min): MarkusKroetzsch: Semantic MediaWiki
    • This talk gives a brief introductory overview of the SemanticMediaWiki (SMW) system, which currently happens to be one of the most widely deployed semantic wikis. The talk reviews SMW's basic functionalities and underlying technologies,. Moreover, various relevant applications of SMW that can be observed today, ranging from classical wiki sites to new innovative scenarios, are introduced as well.
  • Talk 2 (15-20min): YaronKoren: Semantic Forms, Semantic Drilldown, Semantic Result Formats, Semantic Google Maps, Semantic Compound Queries and Data Transfer
    • This talk covers the MediaWiki extensions listed.
  • Talk 3 (10min): MarkGreaves & Daniel Hansch: The HALO-Extension
    • The HALO-Extension to SMW: We present current feature-highlights and ways forward.
  • Talk 4 (10 min): RaphaelVolz & Philipp Zaltenbach: A Rules Prototype in SMW
    • We present a rule-knowledge enabled SMW.
  • Talk 5 (10 min): PeterYim and Ken Baclawski: PMWX - Fine-Grained Addressability in Purple MediaWiki and Purple SemanticMediaWiki
    • Purple MediaWiki (PMWX) is an extension of MediaWiki that provide Purple Number support to MediaWiki and SemanticMediaWiki. It enables fine-grained addressability to wiki content. The PMWX project engaged in a detailed study of related efforts, prepared a list of requirements, and developed a system architecture. The PMWX project has just released a reference implementation as free and open source software. This talk reports on this project, including the architectural and design decisions that were considered, and gives a simple example of annotation and reasoning.
  • Talk 6 (10min): JieBao: Concept Modeling on SMW
    • In the talk, we will show how SMW can be applied in modeling knowledge that is not natively supported by the SMW core, when co-opted with several other extensions. We show use cases in OWL editing, controlled natural language interface, rule inference and integrity constraint checking.
  • Lighting Talk(s), (3 minutes each)
  • Lightning-Talk 1 (3 min.): PeterHaase & Daniel Herzig: Ask the Wiki - An Approach for Semantic Search in SMW
    • Semantic wikis extend wiki platforms with the ability to represent structured information in a machine-processable way. Ontop of the structured information in the wiki, novel ways to search, browse, and present the wiki content become possible. However, while powerful query languages offer new opportunities for semantic search, users typically are not willing to use the syntax of formal query languages. In this work we present an approach to semantic search that combines the expressiveness and capabilities of structured queries with the simplicity of keyword interfaces and faceted browsing: Users articulate their information need using keyword queries, which are translated by the system into structured, conjunctive queries. This translation result may result in multiple possible interpretations of

the information need, which can then be selected and further refined by the user via facets. We have implemented this approach to semantic search as an extension to SemanticMediaWiki. A demonstration is available at

  • Q&A and Open Discussion:
    • refer to the details above on how to participate in the discussion

Questions and Discussion captured from the chat session

Edited transcript ...

Patrick Nagel: hi

Yaron Koren: Hello!

Patrick Nagel: I think i'm in the worst timezone 2:15 in the morning over here.

Patrick Nagel: *drinking coffee*

Yaron Koren: Oh yeah, I forgot youre in Shanghai...

Daniel Herzig: Hi

Patrick Nagel: let me try this voip stuff

Markus Kroetzsch: works well for me

Patrick Nagel: is there a way to call in via sip? probably not...

Markus Kroetzsch: This thing costs 20cent per minute!

Patrick Nagel: whoa

Christoph Lange: hi all

Max Voelkel: Hello everybody

TobiasKuhn: hi everyone!

Daniel Herzig: @Markus, did you use the local number to dial in?

Markus Kroetzsch: yes

Markus Kroetzsch: but via Skype

Daniel Herzig: hmm, maybe the US one is even cheaper

Markus Kroetzsch: I will try

Yaron Koren: Oh, so Skype is working? It wasn't last time I tried, two sessions ago.

Daniel Herzig: its working fine for me right now

Markus Kroetzsch: Ah, I am back.

Markus Kroetzsch: Using the US number, it's only 1.7 cents per minute!

Max Voelkel: All slides are here:

Max Voelkel: Thanks to the purple numbers

Peter Dolog: hi everyone once again

Guoqian Jiang: Hello, Yaron, Danial and all

Yaron Koren: Hello!

Guoqian Jiang: nice to have this smw users gathering after last meeting

Frank Olken: Hi, this is Frank Olken from Arlington, VA.

Harold Solbrig: Hello Frank from Arlington VA.

Max Voelkel: Demo-Link:

Daniel Herzig: i can't access snpedia, can you?

Yaron Koren: It's been very slow in the last few weeks; thankfully, I believe that's not a result of SMW.

Harold Solbrig: Mayo thinks that ChikiPedia is inappropriate - it is a blocked site

Yaron Koren: They're blocking research.

Markus Kroetzsch: The OWL 2 Working Group Wiki is at

Markus Kroetzsch: On this page, you can find links to all current documents detailing this language.

Markus Kroetzsch: The working group is happy to receive comments on last call documents.

Markus Kroetzsch: See for details.

Arturo Sanchez: yes

Markus Kroetzsch: agrees with Yaron here, it is not very convenient to speak for 20min without

any feedback whatsoever ...

Markus Kroetzsch: The Google Chart API Yaron mentioned is at

Markus Kroetzsch: ... it is not part of SMW, since it needs to send your data to Google, which you may not want.

Harold Solbrig: Yaron - we can do the XML to Template conversion...

Harold Solbrig: Got a generic XSLT transform to do exactly that.

Daniel Hansch: Hi Harold! sounds interesting - you have more info about the xml->forms transformation?

Andrew Cowell: Yaron, just a quick thanks for all your work, especially SemanticForms.

Max Voelkel: ***For the next talks: Please try to keep your times very strict***

Daniel Hansch: ok

Markus Kroetzsch: Yaron, the XML export you mentioned: wouldn't it be possible to make

a result printer that creates a very similar XML export based on

semantic data (since you mentioned that RDF is not what you needed)?

Then you would not have to deal with templates.

Yaron Koren: Yes, but that might be unnecessary work, if you have templates.

Markus Kroetzsch: True, but handling templates can introduce additional difficulties.

Yaron Koren: Maybe we should take this offline?

Markus Kroetzsch: Yes, let's not start side chats

Harold Solbrig: Hello Daniel - I'll e-mail you something later today.

Bruce Bray: Which page is he on?

Christoph Lange: still #2

Markus Kroetzsch: You can follow the slides at (password "ontolog")

Bruce Bray: that port blocked for me and many others

Max Voelkel: You can also simply download the PDF presentations

Max Voelkel: link:

Daniel Herzig: Can I install any mediawiki extensions on smw+?

Daniel Hansch: you can install the halo-extension on top of any mediawiki extension.

Daniel Herzig: Does smw+ allows extensions the way the regular smw or mediawiki do?

Daniel Hansch: smw+ is intended to be selfcontained and comes with a useful set of extensions.

Daniel Hansch: yes - of course.

Markus Kroetzsch: SMW+ is essentially a "MediaWiki distribution" that bundles related extensions

Markus Kroetzsch: so it can be customized like any MediaWiki

Daniel Hansch: i hope my talk was not too packed. i am happy to assist you with any inquiry

Mark Greaves: Daniel, your talk was definitely packed, but it was really a fun tour through SMW+!

Daniel Hansch: thanks, Mark

Markus Kroetzsch: How does this feature relate to SMW's Concepts?

Jason Zou: Daniel, I just installed Halo extension yesterday. And I liked it immediately. Good work

Daniel Hansch: Technically, there is no relation.

Daniel Hansch: Let me ask Philipp how this relates "conceptually".

Guoqian Jiang: Daniel, is this simple rule extension available in next release?

Markus Kroetzsch: But concepts are "derived categories" too:

Markus Kroetzsch: ok, let's do that

Daniel Hansch: yes - we are planning to have that in the next release 1.5 - as an separate

but compatible extension.

Harold Solbrig: How many entities are in the db that you've applied the rules to?

Are there issues w/ computational complexity?

Daniel Hansch: We have OntoBroker sitting in the backend of SMW and processing the rules.

Daniel Hansch: OntoBroker is the powerful reasoning engine out there (according to mass-processing tests).

Daniel Hansch: So, in the context of SMW, we did not (yet) reach any limit.

Daniel Hansch: But, of course, OntoBroker will choke if your rule base is faulty.

Daniel Hansch: Therefore we are planning for a "safety belt" coming with Rules and SMW.

(e.g. debugging, unit tests for rules, etc)

Bruce Bray: Ken your voice is very light, can you get closer to your mic?

Max Voelkel: Wow, this transclusion is really cool!

Daniel Hansch: Jason: thank you! Is your wiki publically accessible?

Markus Kroetzsch: I wonder whether this modelled OWL is also processed (e.g. in query answering),

or if it is just stored (which is also a valid goal, of course).

Guoqian Jiang: what's the difference between Rabbit and Ace language?

Markus Kroetzsch: Note that there is also the ACE-Wiki project, using ACE as the basis for a semantic wiki.

TobiasKuhn: Rabbit is designed specifically for OWL. ACE is a general purpose

controlled natural language that is more expressive.

A subset of ACE can be mapped to OWL.

Yaron Koren: This isn't in response to anything, but it seems like the difference

between the Jie / RPI's rules/modeling approach and Ontoprise's approach

is that the former is structured as semantic properties, while the latter

has its own database tables, if I understand things correctly.

TobiasKuhn: People interested in controlled natural languages should also have a look

at AceWiki:

Markus Kroetzsch: Re Yaron: I think RPI's approach is about *meta modelling*, i.e. storing

and editing rules and OWL in a semantic wiki, while Ontoprise's approach

is to augment the data of the wiki using rules as additional *modelling* feature.

Yaron Koren: "PSMW" looks exactly like PMW.

Peter P. Yim: @YaronKoren - ref your "PSMW" looks exactly like PMW - Yes, PMW is MW with pmwx installed

... PSMW is SMW with pmwx installed (or more exactly, PSMW is MW with SMW and pmwx installed)

Yaron Koren: Peter - yes, but how is it different from PMW with any other set of extensions installed?

Peter P. Yim: pwmx provides *addressibility* not semantics ... it is meant to work with and

complement the other semantic tools

Ken Baclawski: @YaronKoren: The intention is to make it look exactly like SMW with PMWX installed.

However, RDF statements can now have a subject that has finer granularity than

just a page. This allows finer granularity for queries and reasoning.

Yaron Koren: Ken: was that shown in the slides?

TobiasKuhn: @JieBao: is this system that you describe available somehow? online or as a download?

Stephen Larson: JieBao.. very nice presentation. Is the code behind your presentation open source

or available somewhere? perhaps i have missed the link but i did not see it.

Jie Bao: our work are mainly wiki templates, and they are available at the example links

Philipp Zaltenbach: @Jie: what reasoner are you using for doing inferencing?

TobiasKuhn: ... or can you give a pointer to a publication that discusses this system?

Christoph Lange: @Markus, @Jie, could you explain the difference between the way

the "concept modeling" extension creates OWL and does reasoning,

and the default SMW way?

Markus Kroetzsch: I don not know the concept modelling extensions. SMW just follows

the OWL semantics (for the features it supports).

Jie Bao: @ TobiasKuhn: it is on

Max Voelkel: +++ NEWS: We just got notification that a fourth workshop on semantic wikis

has been accepted at ESWC2009. Find all relevant links (and also links to

Markus Kroetzsch: The demo link in Peter's talk is:

Christoph Lange: @ Max Voelkel: nice

Jie Bao: @Stephen Larson: links are on the slides

Jie Bao: @ Philipp Zaltenbach: inference is encoded in semantic template so

we do not use an external reasoner

Markus Kroetzsch: @ Jie Bao: But how can this inference be complete (as templates

are computationally so much weaker than OWL)?

Max Voelkel:

Christoph Lange: @JieBao: Is it the case that your extension is just a user-friendly

frontend to SMW's OWL support, or is it different?

Jie Bao: @ Christoph Lange: the OWL extension is so far just an editor and

controlled natural language interface. We haven't done inference

about OWL yet, but it is in the plan.

Yaron Koren: This "Ask the Wiki" extension is pretty neat.

Daniel Herzig: Thanks

Christoph Lange: @Daniel / Peter: I'd suggest that you display the original query string

on the "step 2" page as well

Daniel Hansch: very very nice!! congrats!

Yaron Koren: I hope it gets released soon!

Patrick Nagel: me too

Jie Bao: @Markus Krtzsch: I admit it is not complete

Markus Kroetzsch: @ Jie Bao: OK, that clarifies things for me. It would be very difficult

to provide complete OWL+rules reasoning (not just in a wiki).

Christoph Lange: @Jie, @Markus: thanks, I understood

Chris Mitchell: Question for Yaron Koren RE: Semantic Forms: What scripting language

is used for developing the form template via the "Editing Form:Event" example?

Maybe Groovy, Velocity or simple wiki syntax?

Markus Kroetzsch: It is described on this page:

Daniel Hansch: Ontoprise is logging off - thank you very much for organising this session!

greetings, daniel and philipp.

Christoph Lange: thanks for your cool presentations!

Max Voelkel: Merry X-Mas to ontoprise!

Guoqian Jiang: thanks, daniel

Max Voelkel: ... if there are further questions, just raise your hands

Patrick Nagel: i'm leaving, too. thanks a lot for the great talks and the well organised event!

Christoph Lange: @ Max Voelkel: but isn't your purple/semantics idea quite similar to template transclusion

in SMW? If you include 20 templates into a single page, then the resulting page

is similar to a page with 20 purple numbers (or say "fragment IDs") -- so the challenge

is IMHO to provide an adequate GUI for accessing annotations of such fragments

anonymous2: Question for everyone: Has anyone considered integration with the Nepomuk Semantic Desktop?

Christoph Lange: @anonymous2: Who are you?

Markus Kroetzsch: @anonymous2: that would be a nice project, but I am not aware of anyone pursuing

this actively now.

Markus Kroetzsch: ... you can ask this question to Max, he is involved in Nepomuk

Jie Bao: @anonymous2: is there is demo (or screen shots) available for Nepomuk?

anonymous2: Please excuse me for not speaking vocally... riding noisy public transit

Christoph Lange: KDE 4

Markus Kroetzsch: @Jie: Nepomuk is available for download, and part of KDE

Max Voelkel: Integration of what exactly?

anonymous2: APIs and such for data

Christoph Lange: maybe a wiki where you can annotate/import local files?

anonymous2: Thank you very much. This has answered my question just fine.

anonymous2: I am very interested in the XWiki Help Desk

TobiasKuhn: bye everone! it was a very interesting session!

Markus Kroetzsch says good bye to everyone!

Max Voelkel: maybe we can keep the chat room open for some while to not kill all discussions

anonymous2: Would you believe I am doing all of this from my mobile phone?

Ed Dodds: Does anyone interact with any semantic efforts in the Joomla or Drupal communities? just curious...

Ed Dodds: @PeterYim I've posted the url to your PN presentation in the Drupal semantic web

developers group. We'll see if that sparks any interest...

Peter P. Yim: Thank you, Ed.

Peter P. Yim: Great session ... thanks, everyone ... bibi!

Session ended 2008.12.11-1:05pm PST

Audio Recording of this Session

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  • Conference Date and Time: 11-Dec-2008 10:38am~1:05pm PST
  • Duration of Recording: 2 Hour 20 Minutes
  • Recording File Size: 16.0 MB (in mp3 format)
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