On Friday, October 18th we organized the first Knowledge Graph Forum (opens new window) in Switzerland, co-hosted with the DINAcon (opens new window) conference, the conference for digital sustainability. Our goal was to:
[...] discuss all kinds of Knowledge Graphs and exchange know-how about how companies and organizations use them. The focus will be real-world use cases, case-studies of what worked and what didn’t and where your company or organization wants to go with them.
I was unsure how many people will show up as we had 200 people registered for DINAcon in total (the maximum capacity of the rooms) but only a few gave a preference for the sessions they want to visit. We had a room with 50 people reserved for the Knowledge Graph Forum.
We started with two Keynotes that were held for the whole DINAcon audience. First, we had Katariina Kari (opens new window) (Twitter (opens new window)), Research Engineer & Ontologist at the Zalando Tech-Hub in Helsinki, giving an introduction to Knowledge Graphs and in particular what they do at Zalando related to Knowledge Graphs. The full keynote is available on YouTube (opens new window) and I can only recommend you to check it out, Katariina gives a great introduction to Knowledge Graphs, their use in Zalando and why Star Trek needs one too!
Katariinas presentation was followed by the one from my long-time colleague, Dutch firefighter & software engineer Bart Van Leeuwen (opens new window) (Twitter (opens new window)), he talked about Smart Data for Smarter Firefighters. Barts keynote is also available on YouTube (opens new window) and an absolute must-watch if you wonder if Knowledge Graphs are any good. Spoiler: They are great!
After a break, we moved to the smaller room for our Knowledge Graph Forum sessions. I was amazed to find 50+ people in the room, that was my best-case forecast for the first edition! There were many people I've never met before which is another good sign as clearly new people start to hear about KGs and want to know more. At least in Switzerland, this is the case for both government and private sector companies and from our experience, we can say that they both face very similar problems when it comes to data federation & semantics.
To make a long story short: It was a fantastic day and we are all looking forward to another edition of the Knowledge Graph Forum in 2020! The when and how will be discussed and announced early 2020.