The 2005 IEEE International Conference on e-Technology, e-Commerce and e-Service (EEE-05)

Semantic Web Services: A New Revolution for e-Commerce?

Katia P. Sycara

School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University


The Web, as we know it, is a collection of human readable pages that are virtually unintelligible to computer programs. While the Web emerged as a World Wide repository of digitized information, by and large, the very same information is not available for automatic computation. In recent years two parallel efforts emerged that have the potential of bringing the Web to its true potential: the first effort is the Semantic Web which provides the tools for the explicit markup of the content of Web pages; the second effort is the development of Web Services which results in a Web where programs act as independent agents to become the producers and consumers of information and enable automation of business transactions.

In this talk, I will focus on research that attempts to bridge the gap between the Web as we know it, the Semantic Web and Web services. I propose the vision of Web services as autonomous goal-directed agents which select other agents to interact with, and flexibly negotiate their interaction model, acting at times in client server mode, or at other times in peer to peer mode. The resulting Web services, that I call Autonomous Semantic Web services, utilize ontologies and semantically annotated Web pages to automate the fulfillment of tasks and transactions with other Web agents. In particular, Autonomous Semantic Web services use the Semantic Web to support capability based discovery and interoperation at run time. Such functionality, provided in a reliable and low cost way, has the potential to revolutionize e-commerce.

A first step towards this vision is the development of formal languages and inference mechanisms for representing and reasoning with core concepts of Web services. OWL-S (based on the W3C standard Ontology Web Language (OWL) is the first attempt to define such a language. I will give a brief overview of OWL-S and its relations with the Semantic Web and Web services. In addition, I will provide concrete examples of computational models of how OWL-S can be viewed as the first step in bridging the gap between the Semantic Web and current proposed industry standards for Web services. I will provide concrete examples of OWL-S in action, and present Semantic Web Services tools that my research group has developed.

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Important Dates
Abstract Submission Due:
Sept 28, 2004
Paper Submission Due:
Oct 5, 2004
Oct 19, 2004
Author Notification:
Nov 18, 2004
Dec 9, 2004
Camera-Ready Due:
Dec 16, 2004
Jan 14, 2005

7th International IEEE Conference on E-Commerce Technology 2005
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The 2004 IEEE International Conference on e-Technology, e-Commerce and e-Service (EEE-04)
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