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TECH TALK: The Now-New-Near Web: EventWeb (Part 5)

September 18th, 2006 · No Comments

Ramesh Jains fifth post puts forth the proposition for the EventWeb.

A fundamental insight brought into the creation of WWW by Sir Tim Barners-Lee was that documents could be linked to each other by creating links explicitly among them. Before that each document on Internet was an independent document. By creating tools and environment so documents could be linked and could be created and accessed easily, he created the Web. The tradition of linking documents explicitly has existed for long time through footnotes, references at the end of articles or books, and by explicitly mentioning other documents in the text. The tradition of creating a link between an article and another one started with concept of hyperlinks. And this was taken to a very different utility level in the Web. These links are created to refer to another document explicitly that is considered relevant in that context. We will call them referential links.

Ultimately the Web is the Web due to links among documents.

EventWeb will be created by creating such explicit links among different events. I believe that the links among events are much stronger in many senses, as discussed in the following, than they are in documents. Links among events are also much more natural than they are in documents. There are implicit relationships among documents of different kinds and techniques for discovering and presenting such links are emerging slowly. The same will happen in case of events. In fact, insights is the result of discovering such links among the myriad events that surround us in all aspects of our life.

The early 1990s saw the DocumentWeb in its infancy. Through successive innovations, it has evolved into this gigantic, instantly searchable library we are familiar with. Similarly, these are the early days of the Now Web. As Ramesh puts it: Many calendar and map oriented techniques that are emerging are reminiscent of Gopher days of document-web when each document was independent and was perceived by us as a document. By creating a web of these documents through referential links, the Web has now entered the Google age where we consider them related and use characteristics of the links among them in organizing, accessing, and evaluating information. Going forward, the links among events will be referential, spatial, temporal, causal, and contextual. Today we are in the Gopher age of EventWeb. Many challenges lie ahead to take us into the Google age of EventWeb.

Tomorrow: The New Web


TECH TALK The Now-New-Near Web+T

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