Nanosafety and the semantic web: from natural language to computational processing

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The web is a large interlinked resource of information, which is largely represented in natural language. One of the main goals of the semantic web is to convert this data into formats suitable for computational processing. Within the nanosafety projects that the Department of Bioinformatics at Maastricht University (BiGCaT) is involved in, we talk a lot about Semantic Approaches and terms like the Web Ontology Language (OWL), Resource Description Framework (RDF), SPARQL queries and SPARQL endpoints are used regularly by members of our team. We have given workshops/tutorials/worksessions in the past, but always with a focus on the knowledge needed for a specific task we were working on. This means that many of our project partners understand part of the picture.

We are therefore organizing a workshop covering the whole range of Semantic Approaches that we use within the nanosafety-projects. Starting with more general questions like “what is a triple and what is the link with ontologies and RDF?” all the way to writing SPARQL queries and exploring their capabilities, which by the end of the workshop everyone will be able to do and possibly implement in their own work. We will practice using and extending the eNanoMapper ontology and we will look at the SPARQL endpoints, semantic web applications and tools developed and used by BiGCaT within these nanosafety projects.


The workshop will be spread out over two afternoons on the 8th and 9th of December from 13.00-17.00h. The afternoons will be filled with a mixture of lectures, tutorials, hands-on and Q&A sessions.

Click the links below to go directly to the hands-on session webpages: