Computer Science is a subject with rapid changes and always brimming with new ideas. One of the emerging hot topics is “knowledge discovery in the web”. Taking its roots in document understanding of single texts of early computer linguistics, knowledge discovery in the web goes far beyond looking up the odd article in wikipedia or analysing isolated text-only documents: it aims to distill knowledge, ideas and trends from databases, digitised books, videos and web-pages; from figures, tables and mathematical expressions in scientific papers; from the social web around us in form the likes of facebook, twitter and technorati; from individual and collective user behaviour through search terms used (that, for example, may indicate a pandemic in the making) to games with a purpose (that make explicit some of the hidden knowledge in the web).
KMi professor Stefan Rüger has been invited to address a number of communities with different independent keynotes about research in this hot new topic. The most recent invitation was for IKnow 2011, the 11th International Conference on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Technologies, which takes place at Graz’s exhibition hall in September. Rüger’s critical take on this new field examines the value and potential of social networks, interlinked open data, semantic web and data-mining and sheds some light on new research directions, which are only enabled by the sheer mass of data, sensors, facts, reports, opinions and inter-linkage of people. In May he gave an invited talk about this at a Dagstuhl seminar on Challenges in Document Mining and, later the same month, he delivered a keynote at a round-table discussion hosted by DFG, Germany’s largest research funding organisation. In June, he gave a keynote on multimedia understanding at CBMI 2011, a much-noted scientific event on Content-Based Multimedia Indexing.