Some time ago, I argued that the future internet will not be virtual 3D worlds. So a number of people have asked me what I thought the future internet will be like.
The answer: the Semantic Web.
It’s an abstract concept, and definitely not as sexy as a 3D virtual world.
Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, talks about it in an interview, The future of the Web as seen by its creator.
So, for example, if you are looking at a Web page, you find a talk that you want to take, an event that you want to go to. The event has a place and has a time and it has some people associated with it. But you have to read the Web page and separately open your calendar to put the information on it. And if you want to find the page on the Web you have to type the address again until the page turns back. If you want the corporate details about people, you have to cut and paste the information from a Web page into your address book, because your address book file and your original data files are not integrated together. And they are not integrated with the data on the Web. So the Semantic Web is about data integration.
When you use an application, you should be able to put data there so that you could configure that data. I should be able to inform my computer: “I’m going to that event.” And when I say that, the machine will understand the data. The Semantic Web is about putting data files on the Web. It’s not just a Web of documents but also of data. The Semantic Web of data would have many applications to connect together. For the first time there is a common data format for all applications, for databases and Web pages.