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Semantic Web Interest Group Charter

Note: This is the charter for the Semantic Web Interest Group (formerly the RDF Interest Group). This document supersedes the Interest Group's previous Charter but it is also made obsolete by the new SW Activity started in July 2006, in favour of the current SW IG charter.

Per section 6 Working Groups, Interest Groups, and Coordination Groups of the W3C Process, this charter, and any changes to it, take effect by way of an announcement to the W3C Membership via w3c-ac-members.

About

The Semantic Web Interest Group is designed as a forum to support developers and users of Semantic Web technologies such as RDF and OWL. The group in particular serves to help developers create vocabularies and applications to support a Web data marketplace combining harvesting, syndication, metadata and Web Service techniques.

Table of Contents

  1. Mission statement
  2. Scope of the work
  3. Deliverables
  4. Coordination with other Activities and Groups
  5. Meetings and Discussion fora
  6. Membership
  7. Communication and Confidentiality
  8. Duration
  9. Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)
  10. Contact

1. Mission statement

The Semantic Web Interest Group is a forum for W3C Members and non-Members to discuss innovative Semantic Web applications. The group will focus primarily on applications of the Resource Description Framework technology (including OWL), on potential future work items related to RDF, and the relationship of that work to other activities of W3C and to the broader social and legal context in which the Web is situated.

The Semantic Web Interest Group will host discussions of both architectural/systems issues and application (e.g. T&S) interests; it is a forum for developers and users of Semantic Web technology. The group is a continuation of the earlier RDF Interest Group, and as such continues to provide a forum for everyone interested in storing, exchanging, searching, and using metadata.

The Semantic Web Interest Group also considers a number of areas addressed previously by the PICS initiative. Specifically, the Interest Group will explore the application of W3C metadata technology in the context of the social, legal, and technological issues surrounding Internet content selection, filtering, labelling, signing, quality assurance etc.

Other topics in scope for the Interest Group include RDF query in the context of the Semantic Web roadmap, intellectual property rights, P3P, and electronic commerce. Work items from other fora may be brought to the attention of the Interest Group for comment; in particular, the CC/PP vocabulary describing client capability and user preferences.

An important function of the Interest Group is information sharing within and between application communities. Conference announcements and post-conference reviews to the Interest Group mailing list help advise W3C staff where the W3C might most effectively allocate resources.

2. Scope of the work

The Semantic Web Interest Group is designed as a forum to support developers and users of Semantic Web technologies such as RDF and OWL. The group in particular serves to help developers create vocabularies and applications to support a Web data marketplace combining harvesting, syndication, metadata and Web Service techniques.

Semantic Web developers are already collaborating on vocabularies for areas such as Sitemaps, robots.txt, RSS, Dublin Core, FOAF, favicon; syntactic inclusion and association of metadata etc. The Interest Group provides a forum to support such collaborative vocabulary development, through the use of email discussion, scheduled topical chats (using IRC), Wiki and Weblog tools.

3. Deliverables

As an Interest Group, the Semantic Web Interest Group does not develop specifications or code, and, as a body, it does not have a specific set of deliverables. The Interest Group may be asked to review Last Call Working Drafts and Proposed Recommendations. The Interest Group may also make proposals to other W3C Groups through the W3C Team contact when there is evidence of sufficient Member interest in a work item.

The Interest Group may work on (non recommendation-track) W3C technical reports, for publication as 'Interest Group Notes'.

4. Coordination with other Activities and Groups

Informal coordination is done via the Interest Group's mailing lists. More formal coordination is done within the Semantic Web Coordination Group. The Chair is a member of the W3C Semantic Web Coordination Group (W3C member only).

Discussion of Web Service applications and technology is welcome within the Semantic Web Interest Group, however detailed collaboration and design discussions on the relationship between Semantic Web and Web Service technology should be directed to W3C's Semantic Web Services Interest Group.

The Semantic Web Interest Group shares common goals with the Semantic Web Best Practices and Deployment (SWPBD) Working Group, but differs in its participation model. The SWBPD Working Group consists of a relatively small number of W3C Member representatives, each making a substantial commitment to the weekly activities of the SWBPD Working Group. The Semantic Web Interest Group, by contrast, has a far larger number of participants, each of whose commitment of time and resources may vary unpredictably. The two groups are thus designed to compliment each other, for example through findings and suggestions from the larger Interest Group community being reviewed and documented through the SWBPD Working Group.

5. Meetings and Discussion fora

The Interest Group functions primarily through open e-mail distribution lists hosted by W3C. The main IG list is <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>, with a publicly accessible archive. Other lists sponsored by the Interest Group include www-rdf-logic, www-rdf-calendar, www-rdf-rules, public-semweb-lifesci, www-annotation. The Interest Group home page provides the authoritative list of W3C email lists sponsored by the Group.

The Semantic Web Interest Group exists primarily as an online forum; it does not typically conduct weekly phone conferences. The Interest Group may also conduct virtual meetings using email, IRC, wiki and teleconference facilities, although the large scale, International nature of the group motivates a focus on low cost, asynchronous mechanisms such as email. The Interest Group may on occasion meet or sponsor "Birds-Of-a-Feather" sessions at conferences, W3C Technical Plenaries or alongside other W3C meetings, at the discretion of the Chair and W3C staff contact.

The Interest Group communicates primarily in English, yet seeks to serve an International community. Individuals and groups that can help support cross-language discussion and collaboration are particularly welcome as participants in the Interest Group.

6. Membership

Any person interested in the application of or extensions to the Resource Description Framework is eligible to participate in this Interest Group; W3C Membership is not a prerequisite.

7. Communications and confidentiality

The Semantic Web Interest Group is a public forum. SW IG mailing lists and their archives (primarily www-rdf-interest) are publicly accessible.

8. Duration

The Semantic Web Interest Group is part of the W3C Semantic Web Activity and is chartered until the end of the Activity, 31 January 2006.

9. Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)

The Semantic Web Interest Group provides an opportunity to share perspectives on Semantic Web technology and applications. W3C advises that information shared in the interest group through mailing list and meetings is publicly visible. W3C reminds participants to disclose, where known, the IPR status of information that they share in the Interest Group meetings and materials, in accordance with Section 6 of the W3C Patent Policy.

10. Contact

The contact for the Semantic Web Interest Group is Dan Brickley, W3C.


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