Friday, 9 January 2009

Modeling a Semantic RESTful Web Service

After discussing “Bridging the semantic Web and Web 2.0 with Representational State Transfer (REST)” with my supervisor Dr. David Millard, he suggested that there might be a more straightforward way in applying REST to Semantic Web services, so I'm to take an ontology that represents something that is usually accessed via web services, then access and manipulate it RESTfully.

So I installed Jena, which is a Java API to deal with RDF and OWL,

which means when designing web services with it they'll be servlets, I'm not sure if I would be able to access and manipulate http headers with servlets, that's something I need to check up.

I've talked to Melike and Asma in the lab to make sure that I knew what to expect from Jena, and to see which Java editors they were using. The were very helpful. They have used Jena with Apache and Tomcat which is reassuring.

I am going through the Jena tutorial to get familiar with it, and to insure that I've installed it correctly.

I found that the W3C WSMO Primer might help in modeling a use case for a web service:

"In order to introduce the basic concepts and model, a use case from the domain of e-tourism is used throughout the Primer. In this use case, an agent wants to buy a ticket to travel from Innsbruck (Austria) to Venice (Italy) on a certain date. The goal that specifies the intent of buying a ticket for a trip from Innsbruck to Venice is abstracted from this agent desire. A hypothetical Book Ticket Web service, offered by a "Virtual Travel Agency" (VTA), is considered for achieving the goal. This Web service allows the service requester to search and buy tickets for itineraries starting in Austria. The only accepted payment method is credit card. For the execution of the transaction, the credit card must be a valid PlasticBuy or GoldCard (two fictitious credit card brands)"

Although they have described an ontology -not in OWL- in that document, I don't think I can use it directly, I may need to filter out the function parts and other things I am not sure yet.

I hope by Monday that:

1- got Jena working
2- Sketched an ontology based on the example given in the WSMO Primer

I think I need to start writing about the other technologies and comparing between them for the following reasons:

1- If this will be my research field (I really hope so) then I it will be something to put in the 9 month report.
2- As part as the of "ECS PGR Research Methodology course" we were asked to write something about the related work in our subject which should be submitted after approximately 2 weeks.

But I'm a bit reluctant because:

1-It will take time, and I need the time to explore RESTful Semantic Web Services more.
2-It may turn out to be a dead end (or a detour:) ) in which the comparison will be somewhat in vain.

So I think I'll give the RESTful Semantic Web Services theory next week to focus on, I hope I'll come up with something

If I do
I will write up the comparison
....we'll see !

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