Web Queries: From a Web of Data to a Semantic Web
One significant effort towards combining the virtues of Web search, viz. being accessible to untrained users and able to cope with vastly heterogeneous data, with those of database-style Web queries is the development of keyword-based Web query languages. These languages operate essentially in the same setting as XQuery or SPARQL but with an interface for untrained users.
Keyword-based query languages trade some of the precision that languages like XQuery enable by allowing to formulate exactly what data to select and how to process it, for an easier interface accessible to untrained users. The yardstick for these languages becomes an easily accessible interface that does not sacrifice the essential premise of database-style Web queries, that selection and construction are precise enough to fully automate data processing tasks. To ground the discussion of keyword-based query languages, we give a summary of what we perceive as the main contributions of research and development on Web query languages in the past decade. This summary focuses specifically on what sets Web query languages apart from their predecessors for databases.
Further, this tutorial (1) gives an overview over keyword-based query languages for XML and RDF (2) discusses where the existing approaches succeed and what, in our opinion, are the most glaring open issues, and (3) where, beyond keyword-based query languages, we see the need, the challenge, and the opportunities for combining the ease of use of Web search with the virtues of Web queries.
KeywordsModeling Language Logic Programming Doctoral Student Query Language Query Evaluation
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