by Jan Wyllie, Simon Lelic, & David J. Skyrme
From our analysis of current and potential developments we postulate three scenarios for the future of the web:
- The web without meaning (including corporate portals) – driven by short-term economic imperatives and self interest, this scenario is an extrapolation from the present situation;
- Improved collaborative frameworks – in this scenario, widely accepted taxonomies of hundreds, if not thousands, of different knowledge domains are the building blocks of the future semantic web;
- A third scenario is an updated version of a vision first proposed during the 1930s by H.G. Wells of what he called the “World Brain”.
Key elements of the second and third scenarios are the “intellegent’ web, which incorporates topic maps, knowledge maps and ontologies that act on the basis of the precise meaning of specified terms and the relationships between them. An alternative view is that, instead of new ‘intelligence’ being artificially situated in the network using combinations of algorithms and machine learning, it will come from enhancing the intelligence, disciplines and skills of the users using taxonomy working.