Keynote speech at Web Science and Technology Symposium

Professor Dame Wendy Hall and Professor Nigel Shadbolt gave a keynote speech entitled “Web Science: a New Frontier” at the Web Science and Technology Symposium
in Seoul, Korea.

The symposium, which took place on the 24th of February 2011, was a gathering of the world leaders in the field of Web Science and Technology.

Amongst the many issues discussed in the speech were the processes that have driven the Web’s growth, the function of the Web as a socio-technical system, the drivers that led to the establishment of Web Science as a new academic discipline and the grand challenges facing Web Scientists.

Dame Wendy Hall elected a Fellow of the ACM

Professor Dame Wendy Hall has been elected a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), the world’s largest organization for computing professionals.

Dame Wendy was President of the ACM from 2008 to 2010, the first person from outside North America to hold this position in the ACM’s prestigious 60-year history. Her Fellowship was awarded ‘for contributions to the semantic web and web science and for service to ACM and the international computing community.’

‘I am very honoured to be elected a Fellow of the ACM,’ said Dame Wendy, ‘and to be recognized both for my research and my service to the international community, which is a very significant part of my work.’

Hugh Glaser talks at UKOLN

The talk was “entitled Co-rereference and”.

It took place at the University of Bristol on the 14th Of January 2011. The aims of the UKOLN (the United Kingdom Office for Library and Information Networking) are to inform policy and practice in the areas of digital libraries, metadata and resource discovery, distributed library and information systems, bibliographic management, and web technologies. It is funded by the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) of the Higher and Further Education Funding Councils and the European Union.

Seme4 Speakers at British Museum Study Day

Prof Dame Wendy Hall and Hugh Glaser both gave presentations at a study day organised for the ResearchSpace Project by the British Museum on “Cultural Heritage and the Semantic Web British Museum”.

The event was attended by both policy-makers and technologists from cultural institutions from around the world. Dame Wendy gave a keynote address, and Hugh gave a presentation on “Museum data, where next – consuming linked data”.

Seme4 were also pleased to support the event by providing sponsorship.

Study Day Web Page

Nigel Shadbolt named Government IT Thought Leader

The influential web site has named Prof Nigel Shadbolt as a leading Government IT Thought Leader 2010. writes: “Professor Nigel Shadbolt has helped demonstrate how technology can open the doors on public information locked away in Whitehall.

“In June 2009 Shadbolt and world wide web creator Tim Berners-Lee were appointed information advisers, tasked with finding ways of harnessing tech to reuse the reams of data collected by public bodies.

“The pair’s work led to the creation of, a website designed to allow access to all non-personal data collected by government. The website already links to thousands of datasets, covering topics ranging from public transport routes to details about the highest earners in government.

“The public are already finding interesting new ways to use’s information – turning it into easy-to-digest graphics or web and smartphone apps that allow the data to be mashed up with other information to create useful new insights.

“The coalition government has retained Shadbolt’s services, appointing him to the Public Sector Transparency Board, a body that is setting open data standards to make it easier for information to be shared across the public sector. He is also chairman of the Local Data Panel, which seeks to improve access to data held by local government.

“Shadbolt’s spirit of openness has taken root in Whitehall – with the government setting up, a website designed to publish details of Whitehall department business plans, government spending and other information.

“Outside his public sector work, Shadbolt is professor of artificial intelligence and deputy head for research at the School of Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton.

“Shadbolt is a director of the Web Science Trust, and of the World Wide Web Foundation – organisations that seek to advance our understanding of the web and promote the web’s positive impact on society.

“He is a fellow of both the Royal Academy of Engineering and BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT, and has previously served as BCS president.”

Other leading figures named by include Martha Lane-Fox, Digital Champion, UK Government; Erik Huggers, Director of Future Media and Technology, BBC; and Tom Steinberg, Founder, web sites.

Nigel Shadbolt talks at Royal Society

The talk, entitled “Opening the information floodgates: the technologies and challenges of a web of linked data,” was part of the Royal Society’s programme of lectures for the public on the latest developments in science and technology.

The lecture took place on the 16th of November 2010. Professor Shadbolt discussed the opportunities offered by the rapidly increasing amount of information available on the Web and the emergence of the Web of Linked Data. He also discussed the challenges these developments pose, such as maintaining privacy and integrity of data.

Semantic Web Researchers gather in Shanghai

At the recent International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC) in Shanghai, Seme4 researchers were again active.

Wendy Hall, Nigel Shadbolt, Hugh Glaser and Ian Millard were all able to attend, and take part in the lively discussions.

They had papers in both the main ISWC conference (on “How to Reuse a Faceted Classification and Put it on the Semantic Web”) and the important associated First International Workshop On Consuming Linked Data (COLD2010) on “Consuming Multiple Linked Data Sources: Challenges and Experiences” and “Linked Timelines: Temporal Representation and Management in Linked Data”.

Dame Wendy Hall to chair EU Advisory Group

It has been announced that Prof Dame Wendy Hall will be the new chair of ISTAG – the Advisory Group for the future direction of the European Commission’s ICT research beyond Framework 7.

ISTAG is mandated to provide advice on strategy, objectives and scientific and technological priorities which will shape future research programmes, and the 25 members are drawn from leading universities and communications companies across Europe.

Dame Wendy is excited about her new role, saying that ‘as chair of ISTAG, it is all about bridging the gap between academia and industry to ensure that research funding that is available is used to best effect. ISTAG has a very important role to play in shaping the future of ICT research in Europe.’