Tim Berners-Lee at TED: The next Web of open, linked data

If you have Advene installed, you can watch the 4' summary of the talk.

So going back to 1989, I wrote a memo suggesting global hypertext system. I wrote the code, and put it out there. Why did I do it? Well, it was basically frustration. I would find the data may be, the information I wanted, in some new data format and they were all incompatible. It was just very frustrating, the frustration was on all this unlocked potential. So, if you just imagine they all being part of some big virtual documentation system in the sky, say, on the internet, then life would be so much easier. That is the leap that was very difficult for people to make. Well, some people did. So yes, it was difficult to explain, but it was a grassroots movement. I asked everybody more or less to put their documents, say "Could you put your documents on this Web thing." And you did, thanks. Now, I want you to put your data on the Web. Data, you can do all kinds of stuffs with the computer. I want to think of about a world where everybody has put data on the Web, and so virtually anything you could imagine is on the Web, and I'm calling that Linked Data. This is just a grassroots stuff again, OK? If you want to put something on the Web, there are three rules. First thing is, that those HTTP names, those things that start with "http:", we're using them not just for documents, now we're using them for things that the documents are about. Second rule: if I take one of these "http" names and I look it up, I go and do the Web thing with it, I fetch the data using the HTTP protocol from the Web, I will get back some data in a standard format. Third rule is that when I get back this information, it's not just got somebody's height and weight and when they were born, it's got relationships. Data is relationships. Interestingly, data is relationships. Data comes in fact in lots and lots of different forms. I'm just going to mention a few of them, so that you get the idea of the diversity of it, so that you also see how much unlocked potential. Chris Bizer at the Freie Universit├Ąt in Berlin was one of the first people to put interesting things up. So he wrote a program to take the data, extract it from Wikipedia and put it into a blob of linked data on the Web; which he called dbpedia. Government data. This is the data from all the government departments. Think about how much of that data is about how life is lived in America. It's actually useful, it's got value. if you're looking at Alzheimer's for example, drug discovery, there is an whole lot of linked data which is just coming out because scientists in that field realize this is a great way of getting out of those silos. Data data data. Everytime you do things in a social networking site, the social networking site is taking data and using it, repurposing it. In fact data is about our lives. One last type of data I will talk about, may be it's the most exciting, before I came down here I looked up on the OpenStreetMap. OpenStreetMap is a map, but it's also a wiki. The StreetMap is all about everybody doing their bit, and this creates an incredible resource because everybody else does theirs. We have to ask for raw data now, and I'm gonna ask you to practice that, OK? Practice that, it's important, because you have no idea the number of excuses people come up with to hang on to their data, and not give it to you, even though you've paid for it. And that is what Linked Data is all about. It's about people doing their bit to produce a little bit, and it all connecting. It's about connecting it together, and when you connect data together, you get power in a way that doesn't happen just with the Web, with documents. You get this really huge power out of it. The idea of Linked Data is that we get lots an lots and lots of these boxes that Hans had, and we get lots and lots and lots of things sprouting. OK? So it's called Linked Data. I want you to make it. I want you to demand it. Thanks.