Human-Computer Interaction Institute
School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University
Towards a Semantic Web of
This thesis work explores the application of the Semantic Web in the context of a typical OSS community, the OpenACS community, with a focus on the interactions around the bug resolution process. The research answers three questions: How to create a Semantic Web around the OSS community, the software content, and the interactions? How to use the Semantic Web in the bug resolution process? What is the potential impact of the Semantic Web on the bug resolution process, and vice versa? To answer these questions, we developed a prototype Semantic Web system for OSS communities, Dhruv. Dhruv provides an enhanced semantic interface to bug resolution messages and recommends related software objects and artifacts. Dhruv uses an integrated model of the OpenACS community, the software, and the Web interactions, which is semi-automatically populated from the existing artifacts of the community. Comparison of Dhruv s recommendations with historical bug resolution data reveals that Dhruv is able to recommend relevant artifacts for bug resolution messages. A qualitative think-aloud study of Dhruv with OpenACS community members indicates that Dhruv has high potential of being useful to the OpenACS community. Study participants found the enhanced semantic interface particularly compelling.