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Posts tagged with: devx

DevX article about Semantifying and SPARQLing Twitter Streams

DevX article: Turn Twitter Into Your Personal Assistant
An article about smesher, the semantic microblogging system I've been working on during the last few weeks, is now online at DevX.

The article explains the technical side of the MBC09 talk, a code bundle is included. The latter still lacks the just added posting functionality, I'll try to make another release available once the code is a little more stable.

smesher working hours

Getting Real with RDF & SPARQL at DevX

DevX article about combining the Getting Real approach with SemWeb technologies
My "Getting Real" with RDF and SPARQL article is now available in DevX' Semantic Web zone:
"Getting Real" is an agile approach to web application development. This article explains how it can be successfully combined with the flexibility of semantic web technologies. The article is a look behind the scenes of dooit's first iteration (and an introduction to Trice, code included). The focus is not so much on the Web aspect of RDF, but rather on its ability to accelerate software development ("Data First", etc).

Any feedback is welcome, in comments here or over at the DevX site.

dooit - a live Getting Real experiment

I created an RDF app following the Getting Real approach
dooitI've probably read Getting Real half a dozen times since the release of the free online version last year. The agile process seems to fit quite nicely with RDF-based tools (Semantic CrunchBase was the most recent proof of concept for me). I'm currently writing a DevX article about using RDF and SPARQL in combination with Getting Real and wondered about quantitative numbers for such an approach. As I usually don't record hours for personal projects, I had to create a new one: sillily named "dooit", a to-do list manager.

dooit follows a lot of GR suggestions such as "UI first", not wasting too much time on a name, that less may be enough for 80% of the use cases, or that usage patterns may evolve as "just-as-good" replacements of features ("mm-dd" tags could for example enable calendar-like functionality).

I started the live experiment on Friday and finished the first iteration on Saturday. Below is a twitter log of the individual activities. I was using Trice as a Web framework, otherwise I would of course have spent much more time on generating forms and implementing AJAX handlers etc. So, the numbers only reflect the project-specific effort, but that's what I was interested in.
  • (Fr 08:24) trying the "Getting Real" approach for a small RDF app
  • (Fr 10:51) idea: a siiimple to-do list with taggable items
  • (Fr 11:02) nailing down initial feature set: ~15mins: add, edit, tick off taggable to-do items
  • (Fr 11:02) finding a silly product name: ~5mins: "dooit"
  • (Fr 11:27) creating paper sketches: ~20mins (IIRC, done yesterday evening)
  • (Fr 11:42) got unreal by first spending ~30mins on a logo
  • (Fr 12:07) Setting up blank Trice instance and basic layout to help with HTML creation: ~25mins
  • (Fr 13:52) first dooit HTML mock-up and CSS stylesheet: ~90mins
  • (Fr 17:14) JavaScript/AJAX hooks for editing in place, forms work, too, but w/o data access on the server: ~3h
  • (Fr 18:12) identifying RDF terms for the data structures: ~30min
  • (Fr 18:13) gotta run. time spent so far for creating RDF from a submitted form: 20mins
  • (Sa 14:40) continuing Getting Real live experiment
  • (Sa 14:41) "URIs everywhere" is one of the main issues for agile development of rdf-based apps. Will try to auto-gen them directly from the forms..
  • (Sa 19:04) rdf infrastructure work to auto-generate RDF from forms and to auto-fill forms from RDF: ~2h
  • (Sa 19:07) functions to send form data to RDF store via SPARQL DELETE/INSERT calls: ~1h
  • (Sa 19:09) replacing mockup template sections with SPARQL-generated snippets: ~1h (CRUD and filter-by-tag now in place, just ticking off items doesn't work yet)
  • (Sa 20:09) implementing rest of initial feature set, tests, fine-tuning: ~1 h. done :)
  • (Sa 20:14) Result of Getting Real experiment: http://semsol.org/dooit Got Real in ~10 12 hours
I think I can call it a success so far. One point about GR is staying focused, working from the UI to the code helps a lot here (as does live-logging, I guess ;). But I'm not done yet. Now that I have a first running version, I still have to see if my RDF-driven app can evolve, if the code is manageable and easy to change. I'm looking forward to finding that out, but my shiny new dooit list suggests to finish the DevX article first ;)

CrunchBase Interview

I've been interviewed by the CrunchBase team.
Semantic CrunchBase seems to be worth the time I'm putting into it. Thanks to TechCrunch's and CrunchBase' great move to open their data and encourage reuse (and writing about the apps that use their API), I've had the chance to do a couple of SemWeb demos and reach out to the audience that could benefit as much (or maybe even more) from RDF & Co. as the groups we already have on board: Web app developers.

I also got an offer to write some related articles for DevX, and the CrunchBase team just published an interview where I (shamelessly) promote SemWeb development. I am already noticing an increased number of mails asking for RDF introductions, and people are even starting to just figure things out on their own, with friendly SPARQL paving the path.

This might be the right time for a SWEO II (with a focus on the "E") or a similar effort driven by the RDF community.

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