Platforms for Open Data are increasingly used in various areas of public life, including urban planning, cultural heritage protection, crime prevention and more.

Ontotext JSC and DBpedia (Germany), global leaders in semantic technologies, presented the possibilities of Open Data within the third Meet Up (Open Data and Linked Data) in Sofia. The event,  took place on June 16 at the Academy of Telerik, was organized by Sofia Open Data and Linked Data Group – an informal organization aimed at promoting open and linked data, together with the Data Science Society, dedicated to  the development of data science and support knowledge sharing, education and business in this area.

Open Data is a concept for data sets that are publicly available and can be used by anyone. Today, this approach is widely used in the creation of new platforms in the field of urban planning, economics, science, cultural heritage, and different geographical systems. Implemented in many cities around the world, open data platforms allow optimization of public transport, forecasting the levels and prevention of crimes or fires, air pollution, etc. Ontotext is one of the leading developers of semantic technologies in the world, works on several projects, including Open Data. Ontotext JSC is part of Sirma Group Holding JSC, which plans a recent initial public offering (IPO) on the Bulgarian Stock Exchange (BSE).


Dimitris Kontokostas – one of the leading researchers in the area of Linked Data and knowledge graphs, CTO and member of the executive team at DBpedia Association, and part of the Agile Knowledge Engineering and Semantic Web (AKSW) Research Group in Germany. He told about an international project for extracting of structured data from and presented recent developments in the Linked Data and knowledge graphs field. He shared his experience in bootstrapping, creating and maintaining the Dutch DBpedia and his recent efforts as CTO at DBpedia Association. The project has existed since 2007, enables data extract from Wikipedia and uses them to answer complex questions. For instance, „What are all players who have played the position of goalkeeper for clubs with stadium with 40 000 seats, born in a country with over 10 million people?”. Currently, the platform has localised of 125 languages and provides data on nearly 40 million objects (people, organizations, geographic locations).

Vladimir Alexiev, PhD, PMP is a leading expert at Ontotext in the area of ontology engineering and Linked Open Data with over 15 years,  Head of R&D teams, developing cutting edge software technologies. Mr. Alexiev presented BG DBpeida, diving deeper in ontology and issue mapping. The project includes 12 853 939 facts, 272 600 pages of information, along with data for 34 800 individuals, 5700 organizations and 15 621 locations, till Dec 2014. He invited enthusiasts willing to work on improving BG DBpedia.

Sergi Sergiev, is one of the founders of Data Science Society. He presented the organization, which is focused on the development of innovative technologies such as Deep Learning, Natural Language Processing, Machine Learning for Music, Computer Vision and more. Established a year ago, the society promotes cooperation between science, business and education, in order to share knowledge in the field of Open Data, promotion of this segment, as well as identifying of prospect opportunities for business and public projects. The organization is focused on analysis of data from education, media, and creation of open source libraries.

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