Open Source Semantic Web

Dave Beckett

This talk is personal opinion.
I am not speaking on behalf of my employer.
The slides are presented via S5

Dave Beckett - by the machine

$ whoami

The semantic web says:

$ rapper -g -c
rapper: Parsing URI with parser guess
rapper: Guessed parser name 'grddl'
rapper: Parsing returned 271 triples

Dave Beckett ...

Otherwise you may know me from:


Terminology Here

Semantic Web
Everything below!
Chris Bizier
Ontologies, Inferencing and clever stuff.
Descriptions of terms with some restrictions on use and connections.
Terms and their definitions and simple constraints.
Linked Data
Hyperdata, the Web Of Data
Data model for a directed labeled graph on the web.
(all that syntax stuff)
Religious arguments about brackets and style.

Semantic Web Stack

Semantic Web Layer Cake Tim Berners-Lee

Semantic Web Community

Semantic Web Software

Open Source / Free Software World


3 Big Players with:

Java - Jena

Jena: open source, BSD style

Java - Sesame

Sesame: commercial open source - BSD-style

Java - Mulgara

Mulgara: open source/commercial - OSL v3

Java - Others

There are many other specialised and smaller Java players focusing on applications, specialist areas, ontology inference. e.g.:

C family - C / C++ / C# / Objective-C

C/C++ : OpenLink Software Virtuoso - GPLv2? Apache? BSD?
  • Open source/commercial support model
  • Big, rich, massive scale product
  • Multiplatform
  • Active in the semweb, linking open data, ... communities
C/C++ : Redland - GPLv2+ / Apache v2+
My project - much smaller than the above!
C# : LinqToRdf - BSD license - using (suspended May 2009)
(also has a great intro at
Objective-C : nothing prominent

Web Development Languages

semanticflash (2009)
Openlink AJAX Toolkit
rdflib (2009), 4suite (2006), Redland
RDF::Query (2009), RDF::Simple, Redland
ARC (2009), RAP (2008)
Active RDF (not too active!), otherwise nothing major, Redland

Lots more at Semantic Web Tools on SWIG wiki and Sweet Tools at AI3.

(Open Source) Application Examples

Some (that I know of)

Open Web Services / Clouds / SaaS

FreeBase, ... - Jamie will say more !

Open Semantic Web Standards

'standards' communities beyond formal standards orgs like W3C

(W3C encourages this)

Open Data

Got Data?

Got it openly available on the web?

This one is for Jamie to talk about next...


Lets see some demos with running code.

Leap to a Redland presentation for a bit

Open Questions!


Dave Beckett: