This blog has moved to Medium, where all our new content will be published.

Category: learning

Smart Data Hack Edinburgh

by Sarah on 14 Apr 2014 in learning, open-data, scotland

In February, our very own Bill went to advise at the Smart Data Hack in Edinburgh. This was a 5 day undergraduate event and we put up a prize of £250 for the best app that used government data ... Read More »

Swirrl Blog: A Retrospective

by Ric on 29 Jul 2013 in announcements, learning, linked-data, opinion, rdf

As part of our recent website redesign, we decided to consolidate some of our other blogs into one place, here at, rather than try to keep up a regular blogging routine in multiple places. While we were going through all our old posts I came a across a few that I thought would be worth revisiting. Read More »

Read and Write RDF in your Rails apps

by Ric on 05 Mar 2013 in code, learning, linked-data, open-source, publishmydata, rdf, ruby, tripod

As we've long been promising, we've started to release some open source code to help people publish and consume Linked Open Data. The first component that we'd like to talk about is Tripod, an RDF and SPARQL ORM, designed for use in Ruby-on-Rails apps. Read More »

Creating Asynchronous, Embeddable JavaScript Widgets

by Ric on 11 Feb 2013 in code, javascript, learning

We recently worked with DCLG (Department for Communities and Local Govermnent) to produce an online dashboard that enables users to see how the department is performing against key indicators. Read More »

Understanding RDF serialisation formats

by Ric on 30 Jan 2012 in code, learning, linked-data, rdf

In this article, we'll see how to serialise a graph (i.e. a collection, or set) of RDF triples in different ways, and explore the advantages and disadvantages of each. Read More »

Introduction to RDF

by Ric on 30 Jan 2012 in code, learning, linked-data, rdf

Linked Data is based around describing real world things using RDF. A lot of articles about Linked Data assume you already know what RDF is all about: if you are coming to it for the first time, this article explains the basics. Read More »

SPARQL example: finding data for a postcode

by Bill on 17 Mar 2011 in code, learning, linked-data, rdf, sparql

In this tutorial, we're going to be building and running a query to find the names of all the schools in the London Borough of Brent, but we'll take it one step at a time. The concepts we introduce here should come in useful elsewhere as so much Linked Data is geographically based. Read More »

A skim-read introduction to linked data

by Bill on 14 Mar 2011 in learning, linked-data, rdf

I recently came across this very nice presentation by Yves Raimond and Michael Smethurst: A skim-read introduction to linked data. It's particularly worth reading for its great explanations of content negotiation and of the difference between information resources and non-information resources. Read More »

What is Linked Data?

by Ric on 10 Mar 2011 in data-modelling, learning, linked-data, rdf

I suspect many of our readers may already have a black belt in Linked Data, but for others it's all new, so I thought it was worth explaining what Linked Data means to me. The definitive description is Tim Berners-Lee's Design Issues document, but I'll try to illustrate what this means in practice. Read More »

New Linked Data Book

by Bill on 02 Mar 2011 in announcement, learning, linked-data, rdf

Tom Heath and Chris Bizer have just released a new book Linked Data: Evolving the Web into a Global Data Space. You can read it online at the preceding link or you can get it in paper form from Amazon or from the publisher. Read More »

Simple Linked Data and JavaScript Tutorial

by Ric on 28 Feb 2011 in announcement, learning, linked-data, rdf

A few months ago, I published a tutorial on DailyJS (a popular JavaScript blog), on how to consume Linked Data with JavaScript. This tutorial assumes no previous knowledge of Linked Data or RDF, so I thought this would make a good introductory post here. Read More »