Department of Informatics – DDIS

Dynamic and Distributed Information Systems Group

Success for DDIS at ISWC 2017

10. November 2017 | Suzanne Tolmeijer | Comments Off on Success for DDIS at ISWC 2017

This year’s ISWC conference in Vienna proved successful for DDIS: two main track papers, two workshop papers, a tutorial, a workshop, and a keynote speech at the doctoral consortium by Prof. Abraham Bernstein. Join us in a report about the highlights.

This year’s edition of the 16th International Semantic Web Conference, an important conference in the field, was visited by three of DDIS’s group members: Tobias Grubenmann, Dr. Daniele Dell’Aglio and Prof. Dr. Abraham Bernstein.

One of the main track papers, ‘Challenges of source selection in the WoD’ (1), presented by Tobias, was selected as a spotlight paper. It argues for a renewed effort to find novel join-cardinality approximation techniques for source selection or a change of paradigm in query execution to settings, after showing the limitations of Bloom Filters.

Tobias presenting

Tobias presenting ‘Challenges of source selection in the WoD’

The second research, ‘Computing Authoring Tests from Competency Questions: Experimental Validation’ (2), was co-authored by Daniele. The paper experimentally investigates a technique, Competency Question Ontology Authoring, to see if it does what it promises: assess if an ontology is actually capturing users’ expectations.

Daniele and Tobias also presented two papers at the DeSemWeb workshop. Daniele presented a paper titled ‘On a Web of Data Streams’ (3). Streams are getting more and more popular, but there is no agreement on which protocols and rules we should follow for exchanging and processing them on the web. This article summarizes the requirements we need to address to realize a Web of data streams, and proposes a novel protocol, WeSP, and shows its feasibility.

The other paper, titled ‘Decentralizing the Semantic Web: Who will pay to realize it?’ (4), was presented by Tobias. The vision of a marketplace for decentralized data following basic Web of Data principles and its challenges were discussed.

A workshop on Web Stream Processing, co-hosted by Daniele, targeted the community interested in stream processing in the semantic web context. The event attracted more than 30 attendees, with six talks discussing ongoing studies on stream processing, from querying streams in the web to theoretical results on stream reasoning. (5)

Daniele also co-ran a tutorial called How to Build a Stream Reasoning Application on techniques used to perform reasoning over data streams. After starting with the foundations on extensions of RDF and SPARQL to manage streams, methods to perform DL and ASP were discussed and tried out by the participants. (6)

Finally, Abraham Bernstein and Natasha Noy of Google gave a keynote at the Doctoral Consortium. The keynote named “Is this really Science: Evaluating research contributions” gave an overview to the scientific method and its evaluation in the Semantic Web domain. The keynote was well received – it was even tweeted about by senior researchers from the semantic web community.

Abraham and Natasha presenting

Abraham and Natasha presenting (picture by Lora Aroyo via Twitter)

Natasha and Abraham wrote up the key points of the presentation in their report called “Is This Really Science? The Semantic Webber’s Guide to Evaluating Research Contributions”. (7)

It was a fruitful conference at a great venue, and we look forward to the next edition!

Welcome reception

The Welcome reception at the Vienna City Hall

(1) https://iswc2017.semanticweb.org/paper-209/

(2)  https://iswc2017.semanticweb.org/paper-99/

(3) http://w3id.org/wesp

(4)  http://ceur-ws.org/Vol-1934/contribution-01.pdf

(5) http://streamreasoning.org/events/wsp2017

(6) http://streamreasoning.org/events/streamapp2017

(7) https://www.merlin.uzh.ch/publication/show/9417

Abgelegt unter: ConferenceSemantic Web

Patrick de Boer defends his thesis

9. October 2017 | Suzanne Tolmeijer | Comments Off on Patrick de Boer defends his thesis

On September 13th Patrick de Boer successfully defended his thesis “Crowd Process Design: How to coordinate crowds to solve complex topics”. In his thesis Patrick researched how to programmatically coordinate large crowds towards solving a given problem efficiently. He is planning to use his gathered knowledge in a start-up: PeakData GmbH. We wish him all the best.

Congratulations Patrick!

Patrick with his graduation hat

“Awyeah”

 

 

Abgelegt unter: AllgemeinDDIS-People

Impression of Wikidata Zürich Workshop at IFI

9. October 2017 | Suzanne Tolmeijer | Comments Off on Impression of Wikidata Zürich Workshop at IFI

On September 14, the Wikidata Zurich Workshop took place at IFI. The event organised by UZH, Open Data Zurich, Wikimedia Switzerland and Open Data CH, was attended by around 30 people coming from different backgrounds such as industry, governmental organisations and universities. The main goal of the workshop was to provide information and training about Wikidata, the “free knowledge base that anyone can edit and use“.

The workshop had a fully-packed program, that started with an opening session by Cristina Sarasua (researcher at UZH, active member of Wikimedia Switzerland and main organiser of the event), followed by a keynote by Léa Lacroix, project manager of Wikidata at Wikimedia Germany. Léa Lacroix presented the current status of the knowledge base, mentioned the underlying principles the make Wikidata possible, and showed interesting tools that reuse data from Wikidata and help editors and data providers add (e.g. Wikidata games), watch (e.g. COOL-WD and ORES) and interlink (e.g. Mix’n’Match) Wikidata. As Léa Lacroix highlighted, some of the challenges that the Wikidata community is currently facing include improving data quality, enabling a better integration with other Wikimedia products, dealing with the community and content massive growth and collaborating with the people and organisations that donate and reuse data.

The morning continued with an introduction to Wikidata, a talk about reading Wikidata dumps and a talk where Cristina Sarasua and Oleg Lavrovsky (founder of Datalets and active member of Open Data CH) gave an introduction to the API that can be invoked to get information about Wikidata’s content, edits and contributors programmatically. In the next session, Beat Estermann (researcher of the Berner Hochschule and organiser of the Open Cultural Data Hackathon in Lausanne) gave an online talk about the importance of Wikidata for GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums).

After the lunch break, that was nicely sponsored by Wikimedia Switzerland, Harmonia Amanda (experienced Wikidata editor with more than 2 million edits and active member of Wikimedia France) gave an introduction about querying Wikidata using SPARQL. The afternoon continued with a talk by Rama (active member of Wikimedia Switzerland and frequent Wikimedia Commons author), on the relation of Wikidata with Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons. Afterwards, Cristina Sarasua gave a talk about the different ways in which data can be integrated with Wikidata. As she mentioned, the Open Data Zurich data (https://data.stadt-zuerich.ch/) is a great example of data that can complement Wikidata’s data, because it follows the notability criterion, it is of high quality data and it provides a more detailed information about sites in Zurich (e.g. districts of Zurich and fountains).

The last session was opened by Leon Kastler (software engineer at Avrios International AG, active member of Wikimedia Germany and co-organizer of the workshop), who gave an overview about developing bots in Wikidata. As he mentioned, bots can help humans edit large amounts of data, but should not be used for a one time batch data ingest. The last speakers were Radityo Prasojo (researcher at the University of Bozen-Bolzano), who explained how to develop tools for Wikidata with user scripts and showcased COOL-WD, and Finn A. Nielsen (associate professor at the Technical University of Denmark), who presented Scholia – a tool for browsing scholarly data within Wikidata.

Radityo Prasojo presenting

Photo by CSG

After the workshop, Cristina Sarasua and Leon Kastler gave a tech talk and participated as coders in HackZurich (http://digitalfestival.ch/HACK/schedule).

All the slides and other materials of the Wikidata Zurich workshop can be found at the event page. Given the success and interest shown by participants, the organisers plan to organise further events.

Special thanks go to all the people who helped us (Cristina Sarasua and Leon Kastler) in the organization: Marco Sieber and Michael Grueebler from Open Data Zurich, Ilario Valdelli and Ulrich Lantermann from Wikimedia Switzerland, and Muriel Staub from Open Data CH, as well as all our speakers and session leaders Léa Lacroix, Harmonia Amanda, Rama, Oleg Lavrovsky, Beat Estermann, Radityo Prasojo, Finn A. Nielsen. Hope to see you soon!

Abgelegt unter: Open DataSemantic Web

Bibek Paudel’s paper presented at RecSys conference

27. September 2017 | Suzanne Tolmeijer | Comments Off on Bibek Paudel’s paper presented at RecSys conference

Bibek Paudel presented a paper at the 11th ACM Conference on Recommender Systems (RecSys), a top-tier conference in computer science. The paper “Fewer Flops at the Top: Accuracy, Diversity, and Regularization in Two-Class Collaborative Filtering” introduces the problem of Two Class Collaborative Filtering (TCCF), and a novel machine learning approach to reduce the number of negative links in recommendation lists. Recommendation algorithms like this are widely used in social network and e-commerce services, to suggest new friends, jobs, books, or movies. The authors of the paper are Bibek Paudel (UZH DDIS), Thilo Haas (UZH), and Abraham Bernstein (UZH DDIS). The paper is available in the ACM digital library [1] as well as in Merlin [2], the faculty publication manager.

Bibek Paudel presenting at RecSys

Bibek Paudel presenting the paper at RecSys

[1] https://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=3109916
[2] https://www.merlin.uzh.ch/publication/show/15001

Abgelegt unter: Allgemein

Abraham Bernstein interviewed in Swiss Radio about the future of shopping

4. July 2017 | Abraham Bernstein | Comments Off on Abraham Bernstein interviewed in Swiss Radio about the future of shopping

How can Machine Learning improve shopping?

Are chat-bots going to take over all user interaction?

Prof. Abraham Bernstein in an Radio interview at the Swiss Public Radio:  Wirtschaftsmagazin «Trend» vom 1. Juli 2017 (starting about Minute 20).

 

Abgelegt unter: Human Computer InteractionKnowledge Discovery in DatabasesPress

Abraham Bernstein interviewed on computer poker breakthrough

14. February 2017 | Abraham Bernstein | Comments Off on Abraham Bernstein interviewed on computer poker breakthrough

This past week, Swiss National Radio quoted Abraham Bernstein on the ramifications of the recent breakthrough in computer poker. You can read and listen to the article at: https://www.srf.ch/news/panorama/der-mensch-verliert-sein-poker-gesicht

Abgelegt unter: AllgemeinKnowledge Discovery in DatabasesPress

Paper on the future of the Semantic Web published in the Communications of the ACM

31. August 2016 | Abraham Bernstein | Comments Off on Paper on the future of the Semantic Web published in the Communications of the ACM

Abraham Bernstein (UZH DDIS), James Handler (RPI), and Natalya Noy (Google) just published a paper about their view of the future of the Semantic Web in the Communications of the ACM– one of the leading publications in computer science. The paper named A New Look at the Semantic Web outlines the vast achievements and impacts of the Semantic Web so far and lists some challenges that lie ahead. You can find the paper on the ACM Web-site, the ACM digital library, and the UZH repository.

Abgelegt unter: Semantic Web

DDIS is successful with papers, again…

2. July 2016 | Abraham Bernstein | Comments Off on DDIS is successful with papers, again…

These past weeks have been extremely success in terms of getting papers accepted.

The first good news reached us about getting a paper accepted to the International Joint Conference on AI (IJCAI). Our Paper “Core-Selecting Payment Rules for Combinatorial Auctions with Uncertain Availability of Goods” co-authored by Dmitry Moor, Tobias Grubenmann, Sven Seuken and Abraham Bernstein will be presented at this top conference the week after next.

Second, Mihaela Verman got a paper accepted at the European Conference on AI (ECAI), where she discusses the scaling and recombination of distributed constraint optimization algorithms.

Third, Bibek Paudel, Fabian Christoffer, Chris Newell, and Abraham Bernstein got their paper on “Updatable, Accurate, Diverse, and Scalable Recommendations for Interactive Applications”  accepted to the ACM Transaction on Intelligent Interactive Systems. This paper explores novel approaches on how to provide timely and diverse recommendations at interactive speeds.

And finally, just in, a team around Shen Gao just their paper “Planning Ahead: Stream-Driven Linked-Data Access under Update-Budget Constraints” accepted to this years International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC).

Congratulations to everybody for these achievements.

ps. The papers will make it into our publication repository shortly.

 

Abgelegt unter: Allgemein

A generation of PhDs — Cosmin, Lorenz, and Philip — at graduation ceremonies

3. December 2015 | Abraham Bernstein | Comments Off on A generation of PhDs — Cosmin, Lorenz, and Philip — at graduation ceremonies

Three of this year’s PhD graduates where seen at the faculty’s graduation party recently sporting shirts, jackets, and even a tie was seen. Join us into congratulating Lorenz Fischer, Cosmin Basca, and Philip Stutz (from left to right in picture below) to their successful PhD.

 

Lorenz Fischer, Cosmin Basca, and Philip Stutz at their graduation event.

Lorenz Fischer, Cosmin Basca, and Philip Stutz at their graduation event.

Abgelegt unter: DDIS-PeopleSocial Life

Lorenz Fischer Lands published third paper this year on Workload Scheduling in Distributed Stream Processors using Graph Partitioning

16. September 2015 | Abraham Bernstein | Comments Off on Lorenz Fischer Lands published third paper this year on Workload Scheduling in Distributed Stream Processors using Graph Partitioning

Lorenz Fischer is having a successful publication season. His third paper this year on Workload Scheduling in Distributed Stream Processors using Graph Partitioning  got accepted to the 2015 IEEE International Conference on Big Data (IEEE BigData 2015).

The paper is a refinement of the approach he presented at an ISWC workshop in 2013 and was additionally extended with a real-world evaluation. We will provide the camera ready copy as soon as it is available in our publication archive.

Abgelegt unter: Allgemein