Yahoo search & the Semantic Web
There was a good deal of excitement yesterday at an announcement on the Yahoo! Search weblog that they will be introducing support in the Yahoo Search Monkey platform for indexing some data made available on the Web using Semantic Web standards or using some microformats. In yesterday's post, "Dublin Core" is mentioned as one of the vocabularies which will be supported; it also refers to support for both the W3C's RDFa and Ian Davis' Embedded/Embeddable RDF (Aside: I've been starting to explore RDFa recently and I'm quite excited about the potential, but that should be the topic of a separate post.)
A post by Micah Dubinko provides some further detail in an FAQ style.
It is worth bearing in mind the note of caution from Paul Miller that such an approach brings with it the challenges of dealing with malicious or mischievous attempts to spam rankings, and as I think Micah Dubinko's post makes clear, this is not going to be an aggregator of all the RDF data on the Web. But nevertheless it seems to represents a very significant development in terms of the use of metadata by a major Web search engine (after all the years I've spent having to break it to dismayed Dublin Core aficionados that the metadata from their HTML headers almost certainly wasn't going to be used by any of the global search engines, and unless they knew of an application that was going to index/harvest it, they might wish to consider whether the effort was worthwhile!) - and for the use of Semantic Web technologies in particular.