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Anjo Anjewierden / Lilia Efimova / (Rogier Brussee)
Shared Conceptualizations in Weblogs
Several studies have analysed weblogging as a social activity by studying blogger characteristics (gender, age, background), through characteristics of posts (age of the blog, frequency and length of posts) and by the interconnectedness of blogs (e.g. communities with heavy interlinkage).
In this paper we take one further step and study weblogs as a platform to share conceptualizations.
Weblogs are seen as a means to share information and knowledge. Bloggers who refer to each other's posts partially share terminology. However, it is not immediately clear that the use of a shared term also implies that conceptualisations are shared, i.e. that bloggers have the same mental image of the meaning of the shared terms. Such misconceptions might easily arise as bloggers of totally different backgrounds can meet each other in the blogosphere.
Shared conceptualizations are important for communicating knowledge, for innovation, and for learning because the conceptualisations are the basis for understanding and dialogue. We believe a weblog is a unique vehicle for defining and exposing personal conceptualizations because the time between publishing and discussion seems to be much smaller and the diversity of people exposed to ideas seems to be much larger than for traditional publishing and project teams.
Our proposal is to study weblogs as a platform to share conceptualizations. The approach we have in mind is to take the posts of a weblog and construct an ontology in which the terms in the posts are related semantically. The ontology then becomes an inspectable device of determining the conceptualization of any particular weblog and can be compared to ontologies derived from other weblogs. In addition, the posts from two or more weblogs can be combined resulting in an ontology of a community. The latter may be particularly important when weblogs start being introduced in companies. The combined weblogs would share the top-level concepts, but weblogs of individuals will refine lower-level concepts.
The approach we have in mind is to use existing text analysis tools in order to automatically obtain a shallow ontology (terminology, hypernyms, synonyms, antonyms and part-of relations) from weblogs and analyse the results to determine the relation the bloggers put these terms in. The selected domain is weblogs about Knowledge Management (KM) as we already have an overall ontology of KM from the literature that can be used as an initial filtering mechanism.
last update: Friday, July 23, 2004 at 10:32:54 AM-----------------------