A framework for semantic information search and discovery in enterprise e-commerce applications

John, Biju (2011) A framework for semantic information search and discovery in enterprise e-commerce applications. (PhD thesis), Kingston University, .


Semantic web is an extension of the current web which is envisaged to offer a machine readable information space, where intelligent engines perform sophisticated tasks that can help in managing the massive and complex information on web. The shift towards the use of semantic web and semantic information is important in many areas including E-commerce enterprise applications. However, major issues remain particularly in terms of semantic information grouping, maintenance, storage and automated reasoning and retrieval support that is required for the verification, ranking and validation of E-commerce products and services. Moreover, many E-business and E-commerce approaches are deficient in a number of ways. These include the lack of semantic guidelines for building websites into a business, lack of semantic information search and real-time information leading to a lack of appropriate levels of interaction between the customers and the entrepreneur. Hence, the main aim of this research is to develop a framework for semantic information search and discovery in E-commerce enterprise applications. The proposed framework offers a new approach for semantic grouping, storing, retrieval and ranking of information semantically. Thus, to achieve its aims the research work started with an investigation into existing E-commerce websites and their evaluation using a software quality model which showed that many sites suffer from a lack of appropriate information linkage and real¬time interaction that are required for building semantic E-commerce systems and for information searches. To address these issues a semantic architecture including a semantic layer with an intelligent network based engine is proposed and implemented in this thesis. The architecture supports an automated semantic grouping and retrieval system and produces semantic ranking of information while continuously checking the information semantically and suggesting possible enhancements to the user. The experimental evaluation results, using a case study based on an E-commerce business application, demonstrated the benefits of the approach particularly in terms of semantic search and. semantic ranking of the products. Moreover, although this information search approach was applied in the context of E-commerce it is generic which makes it appropriate for many online applications and websites.

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