Encyclopedia of Database Systems

2018 Edition
| Editors: Ling Liu, M. Tamer Özsu

Semantic Web

  • Grigoris AntoniouEmail author
  • Dimitris Plexousakis
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-8265-9_1320


The central idea of the Semantic Web initiative is to enrich Web content by machine-processable semantics. The approach is based on the following ideas:
  1. 1.

    Use meta-data (data about data) as semantic annotations

  2. 2.

    Use ontologies to describe knowledge needed to understand collections of Web information. The semantic annotations are linked to such ontologies

  3. 3.

    Use logic-based techniques to process and query collections of meta-data and ontologies


In the current Semantic Web work, two main goals can be distinguished.

Interpretation 1: The Semantic Web as the Web of Data

In the first interpretation, the main aim of the Semantic Web is to enable the integration of structured and semi-structured data sources over the Web. The main recipe is to expose data-sets on the Web enriched with semantic annotations, to use ontologies to express the intended semantics of these data-sets, in order to enable the integration and unexpected re-use of these data.

A typical use case for...

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Recommended Reading

  1. 1.
    Antoniou G, van Harmelen F. A semantic Web primer. 2nd ed. Cambridge: MIT Press; 2008.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Staab S, Studer R, editors. Handbook on ontologies. 2nd ed. New York: Springer; 2008.zbMATHGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Berners-Lee T, Hendler J, Lassila O. The semantic Web. Sci Am. 2001;284(5):34–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    REASE. Available at: ubp.l3s.uni-hannover.de/ubp.
  5. 5.
  6. 6.
  7. 7.
  8. 8.
    The International Semantic Web Conference (http://iswc.semanticweb.org/).
  9. 9.
    Journal of Web Semantics (www.elsevier.com/locate/websem).

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas (FORTH)HeraklionGreece

Section editors and affiliations

  • Avigdor Gal
    • 1
  1. 1.Fac. of IE & Mgmt.Technion--Israel Inst. of TechnologyHaifaIsrael