Monday, February 7, 2011

Quick poll: Wikipedia or DBPedia?

I've created a poll near the upper right of this page. In longer form: when making persistent "Linked Data/Semantic Web" references to concepts described in Wikipedia, is it "best practice" to link to Wikipedia or to DBPedia? As in, "" or ""?


Eric Kansa said...

I think it's a matter of style mainly.

If you link to DBpedia, you're making a pretty clear statement about your alignment toward Semantic Web / Linked Data initiatives. A link to Wikipedia less overtly puts you in that camp.

Sebastian Heath said...

Agreed that linking to DBPedia is akin to planting a flag saying "I am semweb/linked data". I like that.

And as an aside, in my thinking on these issues I have kept in mind that a DBPedia URI can be derived from a Wiki one, and vice-versa. In that regard, one answer is "either is fine and it's not a big deal." As Eric says, "it's a matter of style mainly."

The main reason I care to choose is because I'm engaged in marking up digital publications that I hope to be stable over the long term. There is no better publicly recognized definition of the Roman emperor Augustus than . I'm not so interested in judging the content of that page, as I am in recognizing that a link to it is a commonly understood invocation of the concept of that individual. This is basic semweb/ld thinking that I assume most of us find fairly agreeable.

After waffling, I went with wikipedia in the poll. I was swayed by the relationship between the two sites. DBPedia is a derived product and its existence is an affirmation of the important role that Wikipedia plays in organizing information and providing identifiers for concepts. I'm making a gamble that Wikipedia will be around for a long time and I want to take advantage of that. It may be that someone will come along and do a better job of "semtantic webbing" wikipedia and so supplant dbpedia. No criticism of dbpedia is meant by this. I love what they do. But when thinking long, long term, I'll link to wikipedia and let future users/renderers derive links to other parallel resources as they see fit.

leifuss said...

I agree. dbpedia also links to wikipedia so in principle you get either for free anyway (although you need to know that dbpedia exists which you probably do if you're into using linked data)