A Visual Rendering of a Semantic Wiki Query Language
Andreas Hartl, Diploma Thesis, 2009


Abstract

KiWi is a semantic Wiki, aiming to combine the wiki philosophy of collaborative content creation and the methods of the Semantic Web to enable effective knowledge management.
Its intended use is in enterprise knowledge management and other social software settings, and thus encompasses a broad spectrum of possible users. To accommodate users with varying technological backgrounds and varying intended uses for the software, KiWi has its own keyword-based query language, KWQL, which allows for both very complex querying and construction based on the internal KiWi model, and simple keyword queries.
This thesis introduces visKWQL and the KWQL Query Builder, a visual rendering of and editor for the textual KWQL language, that allows the creation of queries by constructing them from visual building blocks, each corresponding to an operator or keyword of the KWQL language.
The Query Builder supports the user in the creation of queries by preventing operations that would result in syntactically incorrect queries, visually displays problems in the query, guides the user with hints and warnings through the query creation process and displays descriptions of the visible building blocks.
The Query Builder automatically translates the visual query into its textual form. Additionally, since it also includes a parser for KWQL, it supports round-tripping, allowing the user to edit the textual query without using the visual Query Builder, and see the changes reflected in the visual representation, or to further textually edit a query generated using the visual editor.
This thesis first gives an overview of different visual languages and methodologies and a short introduction to KiWi and the KiWi Query Language. Afterwards, visKWQL and the KWQL Query Builder are introduced, first giving an overview of the language and editor features, followed by a userís manual and a look at the implementation.


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