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This is now an inactive research group it's members have moved on. You can find them at their new research groups:

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Knowledge Technologies

Possessing knowledge is a clear advantage in today's economy but, like any other asset, if it is inaccessible or unintelligible it becomes unuseable and unprofitable. Standards are emerging that allow knowledge to be integrated into documents and services on the Internet which will provide a means for computers to understand the knowledge that is being presented by that web-resource. The vision of computer interoperation empowered by knowledge is known as the Semantic Web and providing technologies for accessing and managing knowledge over the web is an exciting challenge.

The Group's research is focussed on developing and extending technologies and standards to provide integrated methods and services for the acquisition, modelling, reuse, retrieval, publishing and maintenance of knowledge. The Group has an established track record of successful innovation and exploitation in this area and work closely with business, governmental agencies and other Universities to bring complementary skills to bear on real world problems.

Research Areas

Knowledge Acquisition and Modelling

The challenge of knowledge acquisition is to obtain and understand the knowledge that is required to solve a task. The Group is experimenting in a number of fields, including the development and curation of ontologies (sharable conceptualisations of the objects and concepts in a domain).

Knowledge Retrieval and Reuse

One serious impediment to cost-effective use of knowledge is that often it has to be acquired afresh for use in a new problem. There is little reuse of existing domain content or problem-solving experience. The Group is developing methods for noting contexts where such experience could fruitfully be reapplied, and for performing semantic integration of different representations of this knowledge.

Knowledge Maintenance

Knowledge, once acquired, has to be stored, and regularly updated to ensure its relevance. The Group is investigating issues relating to knowledge maintenance, including methods of understanding how valuable knowledge is, and methods for determining when knowledge can be safely "forgotten" and disposed of.

Semantic Web Technologies

Providing services that are able to communicate without prior knowledge of each other's abilities is important in the context of Grid Computing as well as for the current trend towards Web Services. This work also has strong synergies with our other work on Agent Based Computing.

In addition, providing documents on the web that have their semantics encoded explicitly would allow computers to make informed observations of those documents. These are both visions which will be empowered by knowledge technologies. The Group is involved in developing architectures and tools that demonstrate how Semantic Web technologies can be used in real world problems, and is an active participant in the standardisation of these technologies in the World Wide Web Consortium.