At Networked Planet we’ve been specialising in developing systems that help organisations classify and organise their content for over ten years. This has given us a lot of experience and insight into what works best when it comes to managing data of all sorts. Whilst the concept of Linked Open Data is not a new one (the concept has been around since Tim Berners Lee’s first imaginings of the World Wide Web), it’s taken a while for the best practises of exactly how to achieve the goals of a Web of Data to become bedded in.
Since Tim Berners Lee’s first coining of the term “Linked Data” back in 2006, a vast amount of progress has been made in the specifications of the key elements, notably RDF and SPARQL, but also supporting standards such as Dublin Core and VoID metadata standards that are useful in dataset description and discovery; and Schema.org’s wide-ranging RDF schema for describing a wide variety of data.
In 2012 we started work on BrightstarDB, the first native RDF triple store for the .NET platform. Completely schema free, it means you can add and integrate data of all shapes. Additionally, tools such as the BrightstarDB Entity Framework makes working with semantic data pain-free and incredibly quick to develop server, desktop and mobile applications using semantic data.
In recent times a number of organizations have started publishing more of their data online using the Linked Open Data principles. Much of the initial movement has been in government and sciences, but increasingly publishers, arts organizations, and user-generated content is being opened up. However, we feel that the rate of progress is still not fast enough.
In our view, one of the issues facing organisations who want to join the Web of Data is having user friendly tools to publish and manage the data they put online. This is where the Data Platform comes in. Integrated with the Orchard CMS website system, and using BrightstarDB to store RDF data, the Data Platform provides a simple solution for creating and uploading data into RDF datasets to be published on your website.
We believe that data should be published in a way that is accessible both to machines and human beings. That is why the Data Platform provides a range of widgets to enrich the user experience of browsing around your data, such as maps and charting widgets to make the data easy to digest, and text and image widgets to lay out the information in whatever way you choose. Each resource is also, of course, accessible as machine readable RDF, with an optional SPARQL query service, so that your website sits firmly in the Web of Data, the next generation of the World Wide Web.
For more information about the Data Platform, visit our [Data Platform mini-site][dp-site].