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SDoW2011

31/05/2011, 08h57

Following the successful SDoW workshops at ISWC 2008, 2009 and 2010, this year we (Alex, John, Uldis and me) repeat with the 4th international workshop Social Data on the Web (SDoW2011) at ISWC2011. We aim to bring together Semantic Web experts and Web 2.0 practitioners and users to discuss the application of semantic technologies to data from the Social Web. It is motivated by recent active developments in collaborative and social software and their Semantic Web counterparts, notably in the industry, such as FaceBook Open Graph Protocol.

SDoW2011

Submissions are welcomed until August 15th. See you in Bonn!

LinkedMarkMail

7/02/2011, 22h43

Last weekend I’ve been working on an old idea. Actually quite old, as Kingsley and me discussed it three years ago… but at that time I couldn’t deal with the work involved scrapping the markup. But the other day Nathan refreshed the idea when he tweeted a brief notes about the reverse-engineered MarkMail’s internal APIs. Therefore I decided to rescue that old idea, and that’s precisely what LinkedMarkMail is. Better late than never.

Currently the service is still alpha, but it’s already publishing Linked Data from the mailing lists’ archives indexed by MarkMail. But there are many things to improve in the following days: implement a cache system in order to reduce the number of requests to the API, improve the quality of the data, try to link the new dataset with others, etc… Please, if you have any comment/suggestion, as usual all feedback is welcomed!

And like all the software developed in the context of SWAML, this new small software artifact is open source too.

User Agent interception attacks

4/12/2010, 21h04

I spent a while of this cold afternoon in fixing two problems. I still need to investigate more. Although with similar effects, both problems seem to have had a different source. Moreover one affected to an ad-hoc web application that I developed, and the other affected to a very popular blogging tool, they have in common only the base technology.

From a Web Architect point of view I think it’s interesting to talk about the attack, because I had not seen it before. Basically it consists on intercept the User-Agent header, changing only the content when the site is requested by agents different than a browser. Thus the user isn’t aware about the problem, but it affects the trust of the content retrieved by bots. This obviously affects to traditional search engines, but it also potentially affect Linked Data bots. In this case the injection appended non-valid content on the RDF files, but if it had been a little more sophisticated could be easily deceived other kind of bots.

Manifiesto por una red neutral

2/12/2010, 19h15

Los ciudadanos y las empresas usuarias de Internet adheridas a este texto manifestamos:

  1. Que Internet es una Red Neutral por diseño, desde su creación hasta su actual implementación, en la que la información fluye de manera libre, sin discriminación alguna en función de origen, destino, protocolo o contenido.
  2. Que las empresas, emprendedores y usuarios de Internet han podido crear servicios y productos en esa Red Neutral sin necesidad de autorizaciones ni acuerdos previos, dando lugar a una barrera de entrada prácticamente inexistente que ha permitido la explosión creativa, de innovación y de servicios que define el estado de la red actual.
  3. Que todos los usuarios, emprendedores y empresas de Internet han podido definir y ofrecer sus servicios en condiciones de igualdad llevando el concepto de la libre competencia hasta extremos nunca antes conocidos.
  4. Que Internet es el vehículo de libre expresión, libre información y desarrollo social más importante con el que cuentan ciudadanos y empresas. Su naturaleza no debe ser puesta en riesgo bajo ningún concepto.
  5. Que para posibilitar esa Red Neutral las operadoras deben transportar paquetes de datos de manera neutral sin erigirse en “aduaneros” del tráfico y sin favorecer o perjudicar a unos contenidos por encima de otros.
  6. Que la gestión del tráfico en situaciones puntuales y excepcionales de saturación de las redes debe acometerse de forma transparente, de acuerdo a criterios homogéneos de interés público y no discriminatorios ni comerciales.
  7. Que dicha restricción excepcional del tráfico por parte de las operadoras no puede convertirse en una alternativa sostenida a la inversión en redes.
  8. Que dicha Red Neutral se ve amenazada por operadoras interesadas en llegar a acuerdos comerciales por los que se privilegie o degrade el contenido según su relación comercial con la operadora.
  9. Que algunos operadores del mercado quieren “redefinir” la Red Neutral para manejarla de acuerdo con sus intereses, y esa pretensión debe ser evitada; la definición de las reglas fundamentales del funcionamiento de Internet debe basarse en el interés de quienes la usan, no de quienes la proveen.
  10. Que la respuesta ante esta amenaza para la red no puede ser la inacción: no hacer nada equivale a permitir que intereses privados puedan de facto llevar a cabo prácticas que afectan a las libertades fundamentales de los ciudadanos y la capacidad de las empresas para competir en igualdad de condiciones.
  11. Que es preciso y urgente instar al Gobierno a proteger de manera clara e inequívoca la Red Neutral, con el fin de proteger el valor de Internet de cara al desarrollo de una economía más productiva, moderna, eficiente y libre de injerencias e intromisiones indebidas. Para ello es preciso que cualquier moción que se apruebe vincule de manera indisoluble la definición de Red Neutral en el contenido de la futura ley que se promueve, y no condicione su aplicación a cuestiones que poco tienen que ver con ésta.

La Red Neutral es un concepto claro y definido en el ámbito académico, donde no suscita debate: los ciudadanos y las empresas tienen derecho a que el tráfico de datos recibido o generado no sea manipulado, tergiversado, impedido, desviado, priorizado o retrasado en función del tipo de contenido, del protocolo o aplicación utilizado, del origen o destino de la comunicación ni de cualquier otra consideración ajena a la de su propia voluntad. Ese tráfico se tratará como una comunicación privada y exclusivamente bajo mandato judicial podrá ser espiado, trazado, archivado o analizado en su contenido, como correspondencia privada que es en realidad.

Europa, y España en particular, se encuentran en medio de una crisis económica tan importante que obligará al cambio radical de su modelo productivo, y a un mejor aprovechamiento de la creatividad de sus ciudadanos. La Red Neutral es crucial a la hora de preservar un ecosistema que favorezca la competencia e innovación para la creación de los innumerables productos y servicios que quedan por inventar y descubrir.

La capacidad de trabajar en red, de manera colaborativa, y en mercados conectados, afectará a todos los sectores y todas las empresas de nuestro país, lo que convierte a Internet en un factor clave actual y futuro en nuestro desarrollo económico y social, determinando en gran medida el nivel de competitividad del país. De ahí nuestra profunda preocupación por la preservación de la Red Neutral. Por eso instamos con urgencia al Gobierno español a ser proactivo en el contexto europeo y a legislar de manera clara e inequívoca en ese sentido.

Master Degree

28/07/2010, 15h01

Finally, after too long (remember that I got my Bachelor Degree on 2006), early this morning I presented my Master Degree thesis about trioo. If you are interested, you can checkout the dissertation and the slides (sorry, both in Spanish). With this milestone I close a quite hard stage of my life reconciling work and studies, but at the same time it opens the question about the Doctoral Thesis. But now it’s time to enjoy the summer.

Related on this, last week I was in Athens presenting a paper about my Master Degree at the 5th International Conference on Software and Data Technologies (ICSOFT 2010). I can’t attend the full conference, but it was quite interesting to see what the people is researching on software engineering, and how we can bring the advances on Semantic Web there.

SDoW2010

25/06/2010, 10h42

Following the success of SDoW2008 and SDoW2009, this year we (Alex, John, Uldis and me) repeat with SDoW2010:

SDoW2010

The 3rd international workshop on Social Data on the Web (SDoW2010), co-located with the 9th International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC2010) aims to bring together researchers, developers and practitioners involved in semantically-enhancing social media websites, as well as academics researching more formal aspect of these interactions between the Semantic Web and Social Web.

Submissions are welcomed till August 27th. See you in Shanghai!

djubby

17/04/2010, 13h18

In order to simplify the deployment architecture of STEAMY (hope Nacho can publish something more soon, because it’s a quite interesting FLOSS Linked Data project), I started the development of djubby in some spare moments of this week. Djubby is nothing more than a Python implementation of Pubby, i.e. a Linked Data frontend for SPARQL endpoints for the Django Web framework.

djubby's architecture

For further information, you can read the getting started guide to learn how to use it, or try the demo application with DBpedia. Although release 0.1.4 is quite nice, I know that there is still a long way for djubby to become a stable software artifact, so all feedback is welcome!

Spanish Manifesto in Defense of Fundamental Rights on the Internet, back again

20/03/2010, 12h36

I already wrote a post about this last year, but now it’s time to push again to defense our fundamental rights on the (Spanish) Internet.

A group of journalists, bloggers, professionals and creators want to express their firm opposition to the inclusion in a Draft Law of some changes to Spanish laws restricting the freedoms of expression, information and access to culture on the Internet. They also declare that:

  1. Copyright should not be placed above citizens’ fundamental rights to privacy, security, presumption of innocence, effective judicial protection and freedom of expression.
  2. Suspension of fundamental rights is and must remain an exclusive competence of judges. This blueprint, contrary to the provisions of Article 20.5 of the Spanish Constitution, places in the hands of the executive the power to keep Spanish citizens from accessing certain websites.
  3. The proposed laws would create legal uncertainty across Spanish IT companies, damaging one of the few areas of development and future of our economy, hindering the creation of startups, introducing barriers to competition and slowing down its international projection.
  4. The proposed laws threaten creativity and hinder cultural development. The Internet and new technologies have democratized the creation and publication of all types of content, which no longer depends on an old small industry but on multiple and different sources.
  5. Authors, like all workers, are entitled to live out of their creative ideas, business models and activities linked to their creations. Trying to hold an obsolete industry with legislative changes is neither fair nor realistic. If their business model was based on controlling copies of any creation and this is not possible any more on the Internet, they should look for a new business model.
  6. We believe that cultural industries need modern, effective, credible and affordable alternatives to survive. They also need to adapt to new social practices.
  7. The Internet should be free and not have any interference from groups that seek to perpetuate obsolete business models and stop the free flow of human knowledge.
  8. We ask the Government to guarantee net neutrality in Spain, as it will act as a framework in which a sustainable economy may develop.
  9. We propose a real reform of intellectual property rights in order to ensure a society of knowledge, promote the public domain and limit abuses from copyright organizations.
  10. In a democracy, laws and their amendments should only be adopted after a timely public debate and consultation with all involved parties. Legislative changes affecting fundamental rights can only be made in a Constitutional law.

(This text originally comes from this manifesto. Please, distribute it. For further information, visit its official webpage)

Key insensitive dictionary in Python

15/12/2009, 20h34

How nice looks a key case-insensitive dictionary written in Python:

class KeyInsensitiveDict:

def init(self, d={}): self.dict[“d”] = {} for k, v in d.items(): self[k] = v def getattr(self, attr): return getattr(self.dict[“d”], attr) def setattr(self, attr, value): setattr(self.dict[“d”], attr, value) def setitem(self, key, value): if (hasattr(key, “lower”)): key = key.lower() self.dict[“d”][key] = value def getitem(self, key): if (hasattr(key, “lower”)): key = key.lower() return self.dict[“d”][key]

Actually it’s just a simple usage of the decorator pattern. And I wrote this code because we need it for the Python SPARQL Wrapper.

Manifesto on the rights of Internet users

2/12/2009, 13h50

Via Barrapunto (the spanish version of slashdot) I’ve discovered this manifesto on the rights of Internet users by my friend Javier Candeira (aka Candyman):

A group of journalists, bloggers, professionals and creators want to express their firm opposition to the inclusion in a Draft Law of some changes to Spanish laws restricting the freedoms of expression, information and access to culture on the Internet. They also declare that:

  1. Copyright should not be placed above citizens’ fundamental rights to privacy, security, presumption of innocence, effective judicial protection and freedom of expression.
  2. Suspension of fundamental rights is and must remain an exclusive competence of judges. This blueprint, contrary to the provisions of Article 20.5 of the Spanish Constitution, places in the hands of the executive the power to keep Spanish citizens from accessing certain websites.
  3. The proposed laws would create legal uncertainty across Spanish IT companies, damaging one of the few areas of development and future of our economy, hindering the creation of startups, introducing barriers to competition and slowing down its international projection.
  4. The proposed laws threaten creativity and hinder cultural development. The Internet and new technologies have democratized the creation and publication of all types of content, which no longer depends on an old small industry but on multiple and different sources.
  5. Authors, like all workers, are entitled to live out of their creative ideas, business models and activities linked to their creations. Trying to hold an obsolete industry with legislative changes is neither fair nor realistic. If their business model was based on controlling copies of any creation and this is not possible any more on the Internet, they should look for a new business model.
  6. We believe that cultural industries need modern, effective, credible and affordable alternatives to survive. They also need to adapt to new social practices.
  7. The Internet should be free and not have any interference from groups that seek to perpetuate obsolete business models and stop the free flow of human knowledge.
  8. We ask the Government to guarantee net neutrality in Spain, as it will act as a framework in which a sustainable economy may develop.
  9. We propose a real reform of intellectual property rights in order to ensure a society of knowledge, promote the public domain and limit abuses from copyright organizations.
  10. In a democracy, laws and their amendments should only be adopted after a timely public debate and consultation with all involved parties. Legislative changes affecting fundamental rights can only be made in a Constitutional law.

Note: This manifesto is the work of several authors, and the property of everyone. Copy it, publish it, pass it on as you will.