Tim Berners-Lee, Linked Open Data and a Bag of Potato Chips

May 28, 2010

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, who created the web while working at CERN, is someone we should listen to when he talks about the future development of the Internet.

What he’s hot on right now is something called Linked Open Data, something he believes will be the next evolutionary step for web development. He uses the information on a bag of potato chips to illustrate this concept:

The outside of the bag contains different sets of information, each using a different vocabulary and coming from a different source, Berners-Lee explained.

The front of the package displays the name of the brand and the company’s own marketing claim that the chips are crunchy. The back of the package has nutritional information, such as calories and vitamins, defined by terms generated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Finally, there is a Universal Product Code (UPC) bar code on the bottom of the package, which is not understood by humans at all but rather is recognized by scanning machines globally as the moniker for the item.

In other words, this single package of information actually is a collection of data and attributes that have been developed by multiple parties, not just Utz.

For the rest of the article, go here at IT World.


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