W3C oil and gas semantic business group face to face

Data provenance, linked and ‘big data’ analytics mooted as focus areas at Chevron-hosted meet.

The almost-formed World Wide Web Consortium’s oil, gas and chemicals business group met chez Chevron in Houston last month to envision a semantic web-based future for the industry. Attendees hailed from Apache, ConocoPhillips, Chevron, Energistics, Exxon-Mobil, Halliburton and Statoil. Participants discussed possible application of semweb technology in several areas.

Data provenance and audit across the value chain is seen as a potential application. Semantic technologies seem well suited for capturing complex, ‘anastomosing’ data flows with new standards for data provenance. Synergies are seen with the W3C data provenance working group and with ISO’s 19115-1 energy profile.

Linked data is another area of ‘considerable enthusiasm’ in industry for a semweb approach to drilling information management—focused on non conventional operations and fracking. The University of Tulsa ‘Bricks’ taxonomy is a potential candidate for semantification. Linked data would replace current ‘static’ enterprise information models.

A more speculative case was made for semweb technology in the regulatory and compliance arena—extending the W3C’s work in the field of e-government. Finally, the semantic web is seen as a potentially more sophisticated basis for ‘big data’ analytics of unstructured or semi-structured data. One idea is to ‘push’ analytics further down into large volumes of real time data to ‘provide more sophisticated generation of events that can be used to optimize operations.’ The W3C business group needs to achieve critical mass in the form of five committed member organizations. Currently only Chevron and Statoil have signed up.

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