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W3C Launches Semantic Web for Life Sciences Interest Group

NEW YORK, Nov. 22 (GenomeWeb News) - The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) said today that it has launched a new group that will focus on applying semantic web technology to data-integration challenges in the health care and life science industries.


The group, called the Semantic Web for Health Care and Life Sciences Interest Group (HCLSIG), aims to deploy "standardized semantic web specifications into specific services defined by a user community," and marks the first such domain-centric initiative for the W3C.


"This new venture puts W3C specifications through the paces of a dynamic, multifaceted, and interdependent set of communities," said Tim Berners-Lee, director of the W3C, in a statement. "We have a remarkable opportunity to listen to the area experts, to see how our work meets their needs, and to serve their future requirements."


The W3C envisions the semantic web as the next generation of the current web, in which content will be embedded with semantic meaning that computers can recognize in order to automate linking across documents.


In the health care and life sciences domains, the W3C said it expects embedded semantics to provide researchers with "better access to the knowledge required to effectively find cures to diseases, make drugs safer and more affordable, and enable health-care providers to offer individualized clinical management to patients."


The HCLSIG will develop use cases that "demonstrate the value to business of adopting semantic web technology, core vocabularies and ontologies, guidelines and best practices for unique identifiers," the W3C said.

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