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PoolParty Lifesaver

PoolParty Lifesaver: My Top 5 Highlights from the PoolParty Summit 2024

April 12, 2024


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Going strong in its third iteration, the PoolParty Summit 2024 was a testament to the hard work of the PoolParty marketing team and the collaborative effort of partners, customers, and users to bring together like-minded individuals in the semantic technology community. Spanning across three days in March 2024, the PoolParty Summit was bustling with over 1300 registered attendees, 20 different sessions, and 35 distinguished speakers. Sessions included success stories from PoolParty customers, use cases outlined by partners, and, of course, current highlights and sneak speaks of what’s to come with PoolParty.

Three overarching themes were embodied at the PoolParty Summit 2024 – these being: Intelligent Content, Digital Workplace, and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG). These themes gave structure to the talks during the summit and spiced them accordingly with ideas and thoughts slightly outside the boundaries of everyday semantic tech work.

Picking only a few highlights from the PoolParty Summit 2024 is a daunting task when almost every talk, every question, and every interaction, is a highlight. Being immersed in the heart of the event, I am thrilled to share with you my top 5 standout moments from the PoolParty Summit 2024 – and believe me, the insights go far beyond just 5! Here, I delve into the 5 key moments that resonated with me at the PoolParty Summit 2024:

PoolParty: versatile, adaptive, resilient

Year after year, I find myself continually astounded by the remarkable flexibility of PoolParty. It is this very quality that stands out as my first highlight from the PoolParty Summit 2024 – the remarkable adaptability and resilience embodied by the PoolParty Semantic Suite. This adaptability is rooted in the intricate customization options that allow PoolParty and its toolset to be tailored to the unique needs of every customer, seamlessly aligning with the offerings of our valued partners. The summit showcased numerous instances of this adaptability, underscoring PoolParty’s ability to evolve and cater to diverse requirements – a few sessions worth a notable mention include:

10 years! The Healthdirect-PoolParty journey – from content discoverability to Semantic AI
Healthdirect Australia has been utilizing PoolParty for a decade now, starting with the Thesaurus Manager to organize content for better discoverability. Over the years, we have expanded our usage to the entire PoolParty Semantic Suite, enabling us to create a robust health knowledge graph that supports various systems and applications. Managing multiple ontologies and schemas, the suite now handles data ingestion and RDF transformation efficiently. This has opened doors to new applications like rules engines and symptom checkers, as well as enhancing channels such as contact center helplines. James Humffray (Information Manager at Healthdirect Australia) concluded the session by giving a glimpse into our next frontier which involves exploring semantic AI opportunities to enhance our services while upholding clinical integrity.

Challenges in Creating Taxonomies for Learning & Development
As the need for skills alignment in organizations continues to grow, there is a surge in interest in creating taxonomies to synchronize employee training with specific job roles and skills. This trend has even caught the attention of major players like Walmart, prompting them to explore taxonomy creation. Utilizing taxonomies can lay the groundwork for aligning skills with relevant learning content. During the session, Amber Simpson (Senior Manager, Knowledge Management at Walmart) dove into Walmart’s innovative approach to empowering associates with the necessary skills for their current and future roles, by offering tailored learning paths. Additionally, a long-time friend of PoolParty, Heather Hedden (Senior Consultant at Enterprise Knowledge) explored the intricacies of developing a skills taxonomy, emphasizing the diverse users it serves, the seamless link between skills and roles in a basic ontology, and the challenges in designing the frontend application.

PoolParty for SharePoint: Optimizing the SharePoint Experience
Alexi Lopez-Lorca (Associate Director of Professional Services at Semantic Web Company) and Frederick Bednar (Data Analytics and Data Science Consultant at EBCONT) welcomed us yet again into the world of PoolParty for SharePoint, a cutting-edge solution seamlessly integrated with SharePoint Online. Harnessing the power of fully explainable Semantic AI, this innovative tool facilitates seamless knowledge transfer and discovery within your organization. By capturing the expertise of industry leaders in a tailored business domain, PoolParty automates content management workflows in SharePoint. With last year marking the official launch of this groundbreaking product, this year brings a fresh opportunity to explore its latest features and advancements.

Explore a myriad of highlights in our collaborative endeavours that showcase the versatility, adaptability, and resilience of PoolParty.


Semantic RAG is paving the way toward AI you can Trust

Generative AI, and more specifically Large Language Models (LLMs), are being utilized everywhere you look, you cannot escape them – from ChatGPT, to Google BARD, and even PoolParty meets ChatGPT. This is a growing buzz among customers and companies alike about LLMs and the potential they hold for gaining a competitive edge. However, LLMs are not without their imperfections, as evidenced by instances of Generative AI “hallucinations” – AI-generated content providing innovative insights and valuable information, presented as fact, but very far from the truth.

If only there was a solution to the short comings of an LLM – oh wait, there is!

Enter Retrieval Augmented Generation (RAG) – a strategic framework crafted to enhance the reliability of LLMs by seamlessly integrating pertinent, real-time knowledge directly linked to user queries. This is where RAG shines with its innovative and engaging approach. By instantly providing LLMs with additional relevant context, such as the latest news, research findings, updated statistics, or even historical data, RAG enhances the ability of LLMs to access “fresh” information, resulting in more accurate responses and reduced instances of misinformation.

An example of a graph database in an easy-to-understand knowledge graph of the Mona Lisa.
An example of a graph database in an easy-to-understand knowledge graph of the Mona Lisa.

PoolParty’s Semantic RAG approach takes it a step further by maintaining high domain fidelity and focus on responses while minimizing hallucinations. Referred to as “Advanced RAG” in the literature, Semantic RAG integrates a series of context-infused methods and LLM calls to optimize performance. This was beautifully presented by knowledge expert and Semantic Web Company CEO Andreas Blumauer in a 10-minute clip, Enterprise-Ready Semantic RAG, that showcased the potential of integrating Generative AI with Semantic Models – surpassing basic LLMs, offering valuable insights and actionable solutions for organizations in AI you can Trust.

Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) is here and PoolParty is ready for it!

This is another hot topic that is gaining momentum – but what’s it all about? Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) serves as a vital framework enabling corporations to gauge their practices and operations concerning sustainability matters. While ESG may appear on the surface as yet another set of rules to hinder business, simply leading to the creation of a report filled with trendy jargon at year-end, the reality beneath unveils a multitude of corporate risks: from compliance and investment to supply chain and reputation risks. The core issue lies in the lack of standardized clarity within organizations, compounded by the influx of data from diverse sources.

Add the evolving landscape of global sustainability which presents a myriad of challenges that introduce new risk factors for both investors and companies, prompting a reevaluation of conventional investment strategies.Navigating the intricate realm of ESG involves a multitude of standards, policies, data points, and regulatory bodies. To effectively traverse this complex terrain, data quality and accessibility are pivotal to empower stakeholders in making informed decisions.

During day three of the PoolParty Summit 2024 a roundtable discussion focused around ESG entitled “Mitigating ESG Risk with Reliable Data and AI”, featured a panel of experts from sustainability, finance, and technology. Diving successfully into sustainability strategies and the benefits of leveraging an AI-driven approach they discussed topics such as ESG KPIs, decarbonizing portfolios, and long-term business success. But don’t take my word for it, listen to the entire roundtable discussion on-demand.

Intelligent Content is the wiring of our Semantic house

Describing intelligent content in a way that is easy to understand can be difficult. In it’s simplest definition, intelligent content is the practice of transforming unstructured content into material rich in metadata that is fit for machines so that it can be effectively used by humans later. Simple enough, right?

Every so often, you have one of those “eurueka” or “a-ha” moments, this is exactly what I had when I heard Amber Swope (DITA Specialist and Information Manager at DITA Strategies Inc.) say the following with regard the architecture of intelligent content:

Well, the, you start with a plan. And that is, honestly, for some organizations a big change. A lot of folks are in a reactive mode and they’re creating content on demand without the proper framework. I think about it as a framework as opposed to a set of templates. It’s a framework where it’s clear that content is written by the purpose, and that the purpose is around the context. We get context from the content strategy and who we’re trying to serve and what they’re trying to achieve.


Then we need to have a framework that identifies what is the purpose of the content, and based on that purpose, what’s the structure. Then we need to empower it with metadata. Just having, well-structured modular content isn’t enough anymore – it’s a great start –  but we need to connect it with a plan and architecture.


I joke that information architecture is the equivalent of the electrical wiring in your home. When you walk into a room, you flick on the light switch and you expect lights to come on. But that only happens if someone actually took the time to plan to wire your home with electricity. That to me is where a lot of organizations need to take that step back and not create more content, but really be clear about what they should create and how it should be created by the purpose that it serves, because then it will be able to be delivered intelligently into multiple contexts.

This beautiful analogy, joking or not, clearly illustrates exactly why intelligent content is so very important, it is the architecture created behind the scenes that we might not see, but is essential to functionality. Without the right wiring of our content we might just be left in the dark. 

Watch What Makes Intelligent Content Indispensable? An Expert-led Roundtable Discussion for an enlightening discussion on the importance of intelligent content led by Elsa Sklavounou, Vice President AI Alliances, Global Partnerships at RWS. Explore the insights and expertise of members from the Component Content Alliance, including Michael Iantosca (Senior Director, Platform & Tools at Avalara Inc.), Toni Byrd Ressaire (Director of Innovation at Technically Write IT), Helmut Nagy (CPO at Semantic Web Company), Karsten Schrempp (Founder and Managing Partner at PANTOPIX), Klaus Fleischmann (CEO at Kaleidoscope), and Amber Swope (DITA Specialist and Information Manager at DITA Strategies Inc.), as they collaborate to create tailored content that meets the demands of the modern workplace.

“If we can SPARQL he may land tonight” – a Customer Success Story (CABI)

It’s truly rewarding for a company to witness their product or service creating a tangible impact on the success of their customers. Even more fulfilling is seeing how customers are utilizing your offering to make a meaningful difference in the world.

CABI, a global non-governmental organization, dedicates itself to enhancing livelihoods worldwide by sharing valuable information and utilizing scientific knowledge to tackle challenges in agriculture and the environment. As part of its global mission to enhance livelihoods by delivering valuable information and leveraging scientific expertise to tackle challenges in agriculture and the environment, CABI embarked on a journey to revitalize the CABI Thesaurus. Initially facing obstacles such as isolation, maintenance difficulties, and disconnection from broader initiatives in 2023, the thesaurus underwent a remarkable transformation. Now reborn in SKOS/RDF and seamlessly integrated with 80,000 CABI Compendium datasheets, it drives essential tools like Invasive Species Detection, Pest Risk Analysis, and Horizon Scanning. This revitalized resource promises an enriched search and discovery experience throughout the CABI Digital Library – an evolution made possible by PoolParty.

If you’re not already in love with what CABI’s doing, I’m sure you will be when you read the following excerpt. When asked what the meaning was behind the title of his session “If we can SPARQL he may land tonight”, CABI’s Content Metada Controller and David Bowie fan, Gary Leicester, had the following to say:

‘If we can sparkle he may land tonight’ is from ‘Starman’ (by David Bowie). There’s a parallel universe version of this speech and it might have started, didn’t know what time it was the lights were low. We were lost. We didn’t know where we were at the start of this journey. He’d like to come and meet us, but he thinks he’ll blow our minds.


[This parallel universe verion speaks to] stakeholder management and “if we can sparkle he may land tonight”, obviously where we’re ending up. The talk of ‘where’, whichever way I approached it, ended on five years. We’ve got five years and obviously that’s fundamental to this and what we’re doing. I mean, I can’t really keep up with it, this whole environmental tipping point thing.


In January 2016, I experienced loss and grief, and I couldn’t really look at it face on. A couple days later, Bowie died. And it was kind of how I dealt with it really – I can’t look face on.


The climate crisis, I cannot look that in the eye, but what I can do is this kind of work – and it’s just really great. I feel honored to be able to contribute even in this tiny way. This is my little area.


I can help.

I can reconnect things.

I can improve data.

With those words, Gary steals my top highlight of the PoolParty Summit 2024. Making a positive impact on the planet, each of our endeavors is dedicated to furthering the greater good, in our own unique way. Believe me, there was not a dry eye in the audience after that. It highlighted to us that our work transcends mere data; it truly makes a meaningful impact.

Those are my top 5 highlights of the PoolParty Summit 2024 and I can’t wait for next year’s edition to pick another 5 – fingers crossed there’s another Bowie quote.

Check out all the videos from the PoolParty Summit 2024 on-demand below and find your own top 5 highlights!

We hope you’ve enjoyed this installment of the PoolParty Lifesaver series emphasizing the importance of Knowledge Graphs in the ever-changing world of LLMs. Keep your eyes peeled for these and other emerging technologies in the media, in your inbox, and around the  office water cooler – you never know when they will come handy. 

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