Welcome to the Semantic Web Interest Group at W3C

This document provides a brief introduction to the Semantic Web Interest Group ("SWIG") at W3C. It provides a brief survey of our current set of email discussion lists, as well as noting some possibilities for reorganising the mailing lists in the future.

Note: W3C's Semantic Web Coordination Group is currently conducting a review of the SW mailing lists. The first draft of this document serves primarily to inform that process, but the expected end-result is a public-facing page offering guidance about the various fora and how they fit together. Please NOTE that this page is currently in a very draft form, and that the proposals outlined below have no status beyond "thinking out loud" from the IG chair. In particular, the role of the rule and ontology-related discussion lists has not yet been fully discussed within the SW Coordination Group.

The main proposal for now is to migrate the IG's "home list" to be semantic-web@w3.org; questions for IG members include "should there remain a 'main' RDF list, distinct from a broader 'SW' list? Would it be useful to discuss 'Semantic Web' divorced from particulars of the technology (RDF/OWL'? Where should people who want to collaborate around vocab/ontology development go? Tools? databases etc?


(editor's notes)


The Semantic Web Interest Group is a continuation of the previous RDF Interest Group, which was established in 1999 as a replacement for the earlier PICS Interest Group and the XML-DEV-inspired RDF-DEV discussion list. Since 1999, the group's main forum has been www-rdf-interest. In 2004 the Interest Group was rechartered to reflect its broader role as a focal point for discussions around W3C's Semantic Web initiative.

Mailing Lists

Background: The main list for the Interest Group is currently www-rdf-interest. The list provides the main public W3C forum for discussion RDF and RDF-based technology. Since it was created, W3C has standardized the Web Ontology Language (OWL). OWL discussions have tended to be more technical and detailed, and have largely been focussed around the www-rdf-logic list. Prior to the creation of the Web Ontology Working Group, the RDF logic list was host to detailed technical discussions around the best way for OWL and RDF to fit together. Discussion of RDF query systems (and collaboration amongst their developers, focussing on test cases and interoperability) has taken place on the www-rdf-rules list, alongside discussion of "rule languages" for RDF. The two topics share a mailing list because their technical inter-relationships are not yet clear, and it was important to have an integrated discussion forum while scoping possible new W3C work items. In late 2003, W3C circulated draft charters for possible work on RDF query, and on RDF-based rule languages. The former gave rise to a new Working Group, the Data Access WG; the latter gave rise to considerable debate and remains on the "possible future work" list.

In addition to broad technical topics such as RDF/S, OWL, query, rules etc., W3C hosts a few other Semantic Web-related mailing lists that are devoted to particular topics. [...]

Mailing List Re-Organisation Proposal

The current collection of SW-related mailing lists used by the SWIG have evolved in an ad-hoc fashion over the past 5 years. New technologies have been standardised, Working Groups have been created, and closed, and new communities have found value in W3C SW technology. This is a draft of a proposal to bring the mailing list situation up to date.

Dan Brickley, W3C Semantic Web Interest Group chair

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