[Mediawiki-l] [Semediawiki-user] Semantic Mediawiki Beginners

Bruce Whealton bwhealton at futurewavedesigns.com
Mon Oct 11 23:48:42 UTC 2010

Shana, if you or someone writes a "dummies" book on the semantic mediawiki,
I'll definitely buy a copy.  

There are books on the semantic web but there aren't enough that are
specific to an application.  For example, there is no book on mediawiki and
the semantic web technologies. there are books on Drupal which is 

Using the semantic web technologies but none on drupal and the semantic web.

I did see a "dummies" book on " The Semantic Web" and did read it.  It did
both give a preview of what was coming and say that the semantic web exists
already but without getting specific enough.

One book I got on Programming the Semantic Web failed to say that it used
python, a language I never used, and didn't realize that knowledge of python
would be essential to get anywhere with the book, past chapter 1.  

I did find python interesting though J.  

So, I've done a great deal of reading but a terribly limited amount of
practical work with the semantic web.  I haven't yet picked up a book or
complete course that said "this is what the semantic web is all about and
here is how we will specifically use it in application x."  Where
application x could be mediawiki or a different cms or something.  

That's what is unfortunately lacking in my explorations.

And how are all these people creating foaf files with so little out there in
terms of tools for doing that?

If there was a mediawiki extension for creating foaf files that would be
awesome!  And/or other related files, sioc, skos, etc.



From: Shana Rosenberg [mailto:shanarosenberg at gmail.com] 
Sent: Monday, October 11, 2010 9:09 AM
To: Bruce Whealton
Cc: Semantic MediaWiki users; mediawiki-l at lists.wikimedia.org
Subject: Re: [Semediawiki-user] Semantic Mediawiki Beginners


Hey Bruce,


I've found it kind of hard myself to find really basic information. But
between having a background (somewhat, not great) in programming, and being
an information professional (cool name for librarian), AND the help from
Yaron and others on this list I've been able to get some amazing and
powerful things done with SMW, semantic forms, etc.


It was good advice from Yury to install semantic bundle instead of just SMW.
Lots of great extensions are included and the install will take care of all
of it for you (except that include needed in the LocalSettings.php). He also
provided good links that I've pored over personally, but to be honest those
are still not going to help the beginner faced with all this new stuff at


If you have questions, don't be afraid to ask, just don't think you will get
the blow by blow "Here's the code to do what you want". Unless I know the
answer to the question--then you will get the blow by blow including why it
works because I've been writing tech documentation "for dummies" for over a
decade now :)


If you have basic questions right now, why don't you reply to this thread
and I'll see if I (or someone else, if they want!) can answer them.


The most important thing to start out with is to be able to answer the
question "What am I trying to do?". If you don't have a clear vision for
what you want your wiki to do -- and I mean fundamental stuff like "I want
each page to look like Wikipedia with that box on the side" or "I want an
event calendar", you are going to feel overwhelmed from the start. It is
best to work on one feature at a time unless a feature is interconnected
with another one.


:) Shana

On Sun, Oct 10, 2010 at 9:33 PM, Bruce Whealton
<bwhealton at futurewavedesigns.com> wrote:

Can anyone recommend some good tutorials and training material for getting

up to speed with the semantic media wiki features of mediawiki?

I have it installed and saw a few videos and went to the wiki but I want to

learn more and get better at this.

Thanks in advance,


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