In its final issue, New Breed Librarian publishes an interview with Eric Miller discussing the W3C’s Semantic Web.
The Semantic Web will allow two things.
First, it will allow this information to be surfaced in the form of data, so that a program doesn’t have to strip the formatting and pictures and ads off a Web page and guess the data.
Second, it will allow people to write (or generate) files which explain ˆ to a machine ˆ the relationship between different sets of data.
For example, one will be able to make a “semantic link” between a database with a “zip-code” column and a form with a “zip” field that actually mean the same ˆ they are the same abstract concept. This will allow machines to follow links and hence automatically integrate data from many different sources.
More on the Semantic Web from the W3C’s web site.