Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Tobias recently blogged about Nepomuk, and from the comments it seems that people are a bit in the dark about what Akonadi, Nepomuk and Strigi actually do and how they interact with each other. So if you want to understand those technologies, read on! This blog post is an attempt to clear things up a bit.
Let me start with Soprano. Soprano is a Qt library for accessing semantic storage (RDF). In many ways, Soprano can be compared to the QtSql module, the key difference is that QtSql accesses relational data with SQL as the query language, whereas Soprano accesses semantic data with SPARQL as the query language.
But what is semantic data, and what is the difference to relational data? You probably all know relational databases, which use tables to store data. Semantic databases, on the other hand, use statements, also sometime referred to as sentences, to store data. Statements consist, just like real-world sentences, of a subject (noun), a predicate (verb) and an object. By storing many sentences in a database, one can create a big network of data. The best way to make this clear is probably by examples, so here are some: