How do we get from tags to meaning
In the Web 2.0 world tags are everywhere. Everything can be tagged which is very useful for finding stuff especially non textual stuff like pictures, music and videos. The disadvantage is that a tag which means something to you may be associated with something different to another person. If we could all use the same tags then would that help or would that be too constraining. Would we be venturing into the world of taxonomies and strayig away from folksonomies? Perhaps if we could have a tool which suggested tags that others have used thenthere might be more consistency in meaning try Favikiwhich uses semantic tags using WikiPedia terms.
Use an application to provide meaning
There are applications out there that can work over a number of sites along the same theme to semantically tag them to provide a richer answer to your search. Such a site is BooRahwhich adds semantic meaning to restaurant sites to provide you with a richer material from which to make your choice. BoohRah uses semantic analysis and natural language processing to aggregate reviews from food blogs and so is able to recognis praise and criticism in these reviews and then rates restaurants accordingly.
Semantify your site
Instead of relying on another website to derive meaning from your website you could add the semantics using a tool such as Dapper’s SemantifySemantify converts your site to internationally recognised semantic standards (RDF and RDFa) so that other applications, which understand those standards, can derive the correct meaning directly from your site and make your site readable by semantic search engines.
Use a Semantic Search Engine
If we all semantified our sites then we could use semanticall aware search engines to find what we want in the right context and we could all benefit from the data web. See this example from Yahoo! Search Open Ecosystem of how LinkedIn has marked up its profile pages using international standards (microformats) to present users with a more compelling and useful search results for their site.
Where does this all lead ?
Semanitfied web pages become more than just text they become data and not just data but data in an internationally defined and recognised format. This means that web applications will be able to communicate with each other over the internet and know precisely what they are looking for and be sure that what they get is what they wanted without human intervention. Scary!