Better living through chemistry

I find it funny that I’m currently being inundated with drug comment spam, just after Danny Ayers pointed out the fact that the pharmacy industry is adopting the ‘orphaned’ semantic web:

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), the Internet standards arbiter that developed the HTML content description protocol, released a new standard several years ago called the semantic Web. Operating on linkages between data called triplets, in which two URL-based pieces of information are connected by a recognizable relationship in a kind of subject-verb-object arrangement, the semantic Web gained far less momentum with programmers than did HTML, which can be searched on the basis of written language.

However, the so-far-neglected standard, which relies on extensive and standardized coding of Web-searchable data and documents, may soon be adopted by the big drug companies, where a coterie of information technology (IT) specialists see its potential in organizing R&D data and expediting drug discovery and development—where a triplet might include a specific compound and a functional relationship of that compound to a specific cellular receptor.

“Many pharmaceutical companies are exploring the use of the semantic Web,” says Susie Stephens, principal research scientist for discovery and development informatics at Eli Lilly & Co. It is one of many avenues Lilly is investigating to develop a research IT regime, she says.

The entire article is surreal. And funny! Triplets!

Perhaps someone went home with one too many “semantic web” samples.

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