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A status report

Last month we closed our first round of growth capital from a Norwegian based investment company. They will add business knowledge and industry relations to our team. We have improved our financial strength in order to escalate our business model. We are currently strengthening our core development team with more .Net resources, and adding more partners to our network. Several new partners are now in the process of becoming certified Webnodes partners. So far it really looks good, and we are optimistic of what the future will bring.

Approximately 6 months has passed since we launched the webnodes.com portal in a hurry. A newer and hopefully better website will come soon. Many changes have been implemented since then. Most importantly we now have a very clear strategy and message to the market. We are a unique Semantic CMS, and will help customers to get more out of their web content. We strongly believe in the future of the Semantic Web, and its importance in the Web 3.0 process.

What most people don’t know is that there is already a lot of semantic content out on the web today. Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Maps and Amazon are just a few examples. Funny enough the biggest barrier to the Semantic web may rest with many of today’s existing CMS’s. Almost every website is based on some kind of CMS, but very few of the existing CMS’s has any support for a Semantic data model. So if the vision of a future Semantic Web shall become reality, the CMS’s needs to adapt to this future of Web 3.0. Of course the vision of a Semantic Web will need a set of new standards (RDF, OWL, OData etc. ) to move forward, but without CMS’s that really support this vision, it will probably only be the companies with large IT budgets that will be able to afford to build semantic web solutions, with real semantic content 

Many customers understand the advantages with the Semantic Web, but wonder what advantages a semantic web solution could give them today?

A powerful semantic data model is the most important element in order to create semantic content. When the CMS is using only one data model to power the whole website, and when the CMS is not page centric, but object-oriented, the customers would achieve some obvious benefits:

  • You can easily expose and query your data to other non browser based applications (Mobile phones etc.)
  • You can avoid hierarchical menu structures, and rather provide websites with a much better dynamic navigation based on the relations between the content
  • More precise and relevant filtering and search results
  • You can combine and merge data from a variety of sources into one presentation
  • You easily enable users to create and find related content on your website
  • You will simply move from a “web based on documents”, to a “web based on data”.


It’s also important to mention that customers with a Semantic CMS, will still be able to perform all the standard CMS functions that they would normally expect from any high-end CMS, but also being compatible with the future of Semantics and Web 3.0

The Semantic Web and SEO
A topic that will be interesting to follow is; what will happen with SEO in the future, when the Semantic Web evolves? The whole foundation of SEO is based on that it’s difficult to find exact and relevant info, so we actually need to SEO our websites in order to get higher scores and achieve top listing at search engines. On the other hand, the whole idea with the Semantic Web is to improve how, not only humans, but also machines, finds, combines, relates and acts upon information on the web.

Google has already started to give better ranking to websites with semantic content. So, I don’t think SEO will disappear, but rather that the SEO industry might have to rethink how websites gets better ranking, and carefully consider the development of the Semantic Web.  SEO and the Semantic Web are somehow related. It’s interesting to see if semantic technologies will replace some of SEO importance in today’s web solutions, or on the contrary, - that SEO will grow even further, together with a stronger appearance of the Semantic Web? 

So who’s currently working with the development of the Semantic web?

The name Tim Berners-Lee (“the father of the web”) is probably well known to most readers. He is the director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), which oversees the Web's continued development. He is also the founder of the World Wide Web Foundation. He is one of the main ambassadors for the Semantic Web and the Web 3.0 process. He has stated the following:

I have a dream for the Web [in which computers] become capable of analyzing all the data on the Web – the content, links, and transactions between people and computers. A ‘Semantic Web’, which should make this possible, has yet to emerge, but when it does, the day-to-day mechanisms of trade, bureaucracy and our daily lives will be handled by machines talking to machines. The ‘intelligent agents’ people have touted for ages will finally materialize.

Tim Berners-Lee,

In the meantime we at Webnodes are at least trying to contribute to this vision, with developing a unique Semantic CMS. 

All the best from

Fredrik Thrane Holst
Managing Director
Webnodes

11/12/2010
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