SPARQL and Big Data (and NoSQL)

How to pursue the common ground?

I think it’s obvious that SPARQL and other RDF-related technologies have plenty to offer to the overlapping worlds of Big Data and NoSQL, but this doesn’t seem as obvious to people who focus on those areas. For example, the program for this week’s Strata conference makes no mention of RDF or SPARQL. The more I look into it, the more I see that this flexible, standardized data model and query language align very well with what many of those people are trying to do.

IBM's DB2 as a triplestore

Surprisingly easy to set up and use, but requiring lots of Java coding for any real application development.

I thought it was pretty big news for the semantic web world when IBM announced that release 10.1 of their venerable DB2 database manager could function as an RDF triplestore, but it seems that few others—not even, apparently, IBM staff responsible for marketing semantic technology—agreed with me. More on this below.


Children's edition.

Going through some old files, I found a homework assignment that my younger daughter did seven or eight years ago. When doing RDF-related data modeling you put a lot of thought into properties, and I remember getting a kick out of this introduction to the concept when she brought it home.

Reclaiming my picture metadata from flickr

Surprise: by converting multiple sources of data to triples and then running a SPARQL query.

We should give flickr some credit for providing an API that lets us download the metadata we’ve entered about our pictures (for example, titles, descriptions, and membership in custom sets such as XML Summer School 2011 or Artsier Stuff) but that metadata all refers to pictures on flickr’s servers. What if I want to use blurb.com to print a hardcopy album of one of these sets? Do I have to download that set’s pictures from flickr, even though I already have them on a hard disk,…

Trying out SPARQL 1.1's COPY and MOVE operations

Copying and moving triples between graphs, named or otherwise.

SPARQL 1.1 Update’s COPY and MOVE operations let you copy and move triples between named graphs or between the default graph and a named graph. These operations first appeared in the May 2011 SPARQL 1.1 Update draft, but with the recent 0.2.2 snapshot release of Fuseki I find I can try their full range of capabilities a little more than I could with the 0.2.1 incubating release of Fuseki.