Powerful Data Management - Semantics is Key!

July 21, 2017

Semantic Web Company’s (SWC) CFO and co-founder Martin Kaltenböck on semantic technologies, SEMANTICS 2017 and the role of SWC at this yearly event. A great overview on these topics brought to you by SEMANTICS 2017 Gold Sponsor PoolParty.

Efficient and high quality data management is a key factor these days for competitive advantage in a continuously growing data economy! This goes over all the keyowrds and topics that we read about in relevant media and news streams every day like big data (volume, velocity, variety, veracity), cognitive computing, articificial intelligence (yes its here again!) and finally machine learning, pattern recognition and/or predictive analytics (maybe even blockchain technology) - and all this pulled together and combined in a powerful company data warehouse or datalake!

This is the solution that a lot of organisations have heard of and now they are looking for appropriate tools and software solutions for such a data lake technology. But it is not that simple to just put together the listed areas & technologies and look for a related technology or tool. As efficient and sustainable data management is even more: it is first of all creating real value out of data. And thereby it is about taking into account and taking care of metadata (the data about the data) AND taking care about THE MEANING of data (for a better understanding: the context, provenance and lineage of data, what means: where does data come from, who is the author or publisher, how has data been created and in which units, has data been transformed or manipulated, etc.). If we just pull together all the data we have, we need or we can acquire into a big black box without any context and start the analysis we will very quickly find out that the results of such data analytics are very weak or even just wrong.

Here semantics and linked data come into play: the mapping of metadata and the data itself coming from different sources in different formats and using different terminologies and even languages is crucial to create a powerful and high quality (semantic) data lake. Only this enables interoperability of heterogenous data (sources) and efficient and sustainable data integration including the important information about the data and its sources and the lineage. This can be realised by going into the direction of an industry knowledge graph that represents metadata and data in an overall integrated model that is customised - and can be at any time adapted - to organisational requirements. This knowledge graph can be furthermore applied to several internal IT systems (CMS, ERP, CRM, ..), own data stores and repositories and even to data streams received from partners, customers or suppliers or it can be applied to harvested information and data from open data sources to ensure a powerful and high quality data integration mechanisms and to establish a semantic data lake that builds the basis for good analysis that creates value out of the data! With a big difference and a crucial advantage, that by using knowledge graphs and data models that follow semantic web standards, organisations benefit from the ability to influence their data lakes along their needs and requirements and not being caught in a lock-in effect in the form of a 'data lake black box solution' that no-one on the end user side knows how it works and how to customise or influence anymore.

SEMANTiCS2017 taking place in Amsterdam 11.-14. of September 2017 (main conference: 12-13.9.2017) will cover all of these important topics of knowledge graphs and semantic data lakes as well as related areas like data quality and -acquisition, interoperability, entity- and relation extraction and linking, and many many more... And in combination with this years SEMANTiCS data-science track participants will learn how to best make use of semantics in combination with big data technologies, cognitive computing or predicitive analytics.

Semantic Web Company (SWC, https://www.semantic-web.com) started SEMANTiCS conference series already in 2005 and established the event over the years together with its partners and supporters as the biggest European industry event on semantics and linked data today. For SWC and for our core product PoolParty Semantic Suite (https://www.poolparty.biz) the conference has always been an important annual meeting place for industry, academia & research and the semantic web community to practise knowledge- and technology exchange, to start new businesses and projects and to learn about the latest developments in the fields of semantics and linked (open) data.

Thereby I am very much looking forward to this years edition of SEMANTiCS conference - the first time in Amsterdam, the Netherlands together with our local partners VU and TNO - to meet well known and to learn to know new people, to exchange on ideas and technologies, to get inspired by new approaches in semantics and linked data and to finally discuss new projects with business and research partners coming to Amsterdam!