Semantic Technologies (Knowledge Graphs and All That)

Semantic Technologies provide easier ways to find, share, reuse and combine information. Prominent examples include Google's Knowledge Graph, Wikipedia's knowledge base sister Wikidata, numerous artificial intelligence projects from Alexa to Siri, and the healthcare ontology SNOMED CT. Various companies are exploring the use of their own enterprise knowledge graphs for improving internal knowledge management with the help of tools such as the graph database management system Neo4j, virtual knowledge graph engine Ontop, and the enterprise knowledge graph platform Stardog. Semantic Technologies are a cross-cutting topic in computer science that involves aspects of data management, publication (exchange formats, data integration), knowledge organisation (ontologies), and advanced analytics (expressive query languages). This module gives an introduction to Semantic Technologies for data analysis, knowledge representation, and data management.

Lecturer:   Michael Zakharyaschev, email:

Syllabus and Slides

  1. Introduction to the module: Knowledge Graphs, Semantic Web, Linked Data, Wikidata; ontologies and their applications. Lecture slides
    Practical work: building ontologies with the Protege editor. The Godfather lab slides OWL ontology
  2. Is XML a semantic technology? A quick overview of XML: the tree model of XML documents, XML Schema, JSON. Querying XML documents with XPath. Lecture slides
    Practical work: (1) querying XML using an online; (2) building a pizza ontology lab slides
  3. Resource Description Framework RDF. RDF Schema Lecture slides You can also read the Wikipedia article.
    Practical work: building Knowledge Graphs. Exercises with model answers.
  4. SPARQL Query Language. Lecture slides " SPARQL cheat sheet."
    Practical work: querying Knowledge Graphs using SPARQL, querying DBpedia.
  5. Wikidata; Querying Wikidata with SPARQL. Lecture slides.
    Practical work: querying Wikidata; ontology-based access to the IMDB database using Ontop.
  6. Property Graphs at Neo4j. Lecture slides Querying with Cypher. Lecture slides Graph databases for beginners.
  7. The OWL 2 Web Ontology Language. Lecture slides
  8. Reasoning with description logic. Lecture slides

Course Notes

Installing the Protégé Ontology Editor

The Protégé Ontology Editor can be downloaded from