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Reports (Research Report) Year : 2011

Semantic Faceted Search: Safe and Expressive Navigation in RDF Graphs

Sébastien Ferré
Alice Hermann
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Mireille Ducassé


Faceted search and querying are the two main paradigms to search the Semantic Web. Querying languages, such as SPARQL, oer expressive means for searching knowledge bases, but they are dicult to use. Query assistants help users to write well-formed queries, but they do not prevent empty results. Faceted search supports exploratory search, i.e., guided navigation that returns rich feedbacks to users, and prevents them to make navigation steps that lead to empty results (dead-ends). However, faceted search systems do not oer the same expressiveness as query languages. We introduce semantic faceted search, the combination of an expressive query language and faceted search to reconcile the two paradigms. The query language is basically SPARQL, but with a syntax that extends Turtle with disjunction and negation, and that better ts in a faceted search interface: LISQL. We formalize the navigation of faceted search as a navigation graph, where nodes are queries, and navigation links are query transformations. We prove that this navigation graph is safe (no dead-end), and complete (every query that is not a dead-end can be reached by navigation). That formalization itself is a contribution to faceted search. A prototype, Camelis 2, has been implemented, and a usability evaluation with graduate students demonstrated that semantic faceted search retains the ease-of-use of faceted search, and enables most users to build complex queries with little training.
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inria-00554093 , version 1 (10-01-2011)


  • HAL Id : inria-00554093 , version 1


Sébastien Ferré, Alice Hermann, Mireille Ducassé. Semantic Faceted Search: Safe and Expressive Navigation in RDF Graphs. [Research Report] PI 1964, 2011, pp.27. ⟨inria-00554093⟩
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