Yalda in Iran…

First of all, happy new year and best wishes for 2016! Christmas holidays were a great opportunity for me to travel to my home country Iran and enjoy time with family and friends. I found it good to write in my diary about some of my experiences there:

Wonderful Food

Eating delicious Persian food is always an inevitable part of our stay in Iran.  From Kebabs to Khoresh! Our food experience varied from very traditional Iranian dinner parties where all people sit around a tablecloth, to having lunch in modern and luxury restaurants in Tehran. I have to measure how much extra weight I have gained after returning from Iran! it is now time to go on a diet 😀

Polluted Air
In winters, due to the lack of green, energy-efficient and environmentally friendly vehicles as well as increasing amount of meteorological condition of temperature inversion, Tehran is often associated with murky, oxygen-starved weather interludes. This time, it happened exactly during our period of stay in Tehran. Therefore, we could rarely see the nice blue sky and mountain view of Tehran! Check Tehran’s Real-time Air Quality Index Visual Map for more information.

In our family, the month December is the most crowded time for birthdays! I even have an aunt which is called Azar (name of this month in Jalali Calendar)! it is always full of joy to sing the birthday song together with the family members and the ones you love 🙂


Travel on travel
During our stay, we gave a short visit to Mashhad, the second most populous city in Iran. For me and Bita, Mashhad is a very memorial and spiritual city where we usually review the past and envisage our plans for future!


In Iran, Yalda is the name of the longest night of the year when friends and family gather together to eat, drink and read poetry (especially Hafez) until well after midnight. Fruits and nuts are eaten and pomegranates and watermelons are particularly significant!

I not only visited my friends who live in Iran but also met friends who live abroad and were in Iran for the Christmas holidays (the same situation as me).

This time, I had a new plan in mind which was promoting Linked (Open) Data culture within the Persian Web data space. In order to introduce Linked Data to people in Iran, I started off by giving talks and organising workshops at universities and research centres which would serve as a baseline for creating the Linked Data infrastructure on Persian web sphere. I gave a talk at Amirkabir Technical University and University of Tehran which were arranged by KnowDiff. I held a workshop at ITRC which was organized by BMNI. And finally another talk at Shahid Beheshti University where I had received my B.Sc in software engineering. I found these events very constructive with people who were enthusiastic to collaborate on building the required infrastructure for Persian Semantic Web space. You can check my presentation slides here.

Screen Shot 2016-01-13 at 22.40.02

Semantic Web + Web Components

+ Bridging the gap between Semantic Web and Web Components worlds brings mutual benefits for both sides. On one hand, Semantic Web technologies provide support for richer component discovery, interoperability, integration, and adaptation on the Web. On the other, Web Components bring the advantages of UI standardization, reusability, replaceability and encapsulation to current Semantic Web applications…

+ Recently I have been working on the idea of Linked Data-driven (LD-R) Web Components as a species of Web components that employ the RDF data model for representing their content and specification (i.e. metadata about the component). LD-R components are supported by a set of predefined core Web components, each representing a compartment of the RDF data model on the Web UI. Thus, the Semantic Web nature of a Linked Data Application (LDA) can be encapsulated in LD-R components thereby, allowing UX designers and Web developers outside the Semantic Web community to contribute to LDAs. The components also provide current Semantic Web developers with a mechanism to reuse existing Web components in their LDAs. Furthermore, LD-R components exploit the power and flexibility of the RDF data model in describing and sharing resources to provide a mechanism to adapt the Web interfaces based on the meaning of data and user-defined rules…

+ For more information you can read our recent paper submitted to the WWW 2016 conference Adaptive Linked Data-driven Web Components: Building Flexible and Reusable Semantic Web Interfaces (pdf)

+ Implementation: http://ld-r.org

Love in Fall…

+ Autumn…it is your turn now…to charm us with your irresistible beauty…walking gracefully into the touch of drizzle with the music of the leaves…colors that speak out warmly…

+  http://www.janeksedlar.com/galerie-2/

The blank node of life…

Sometimes, you feel like there is somewhere a blank node in your life. Something which has no specific name but exists through its properties and effects. It has an identifier but your are not the one who assigns this identifier. It is out of your control…You can smell it when you breath very deeply in the dawn, you hear its voice from the bottom of your heart when you get drown in your dreams. The blank node is necessary for our existence, for the livelihood… We just need to discover and decipher it, bring it to the vocabulary we are familiar with, the broader and deeper our vocabulary is, the more likely to feel it…

Tree of Life

جای خالی وب معنایی در فضای وب فارسی

ماه رمضان هر سال فرصت خوبیه که یک کم به وب فارسی برگردم و یه مینی پروژه انجام بدم که خیلی هم دور نباشم از وب فارسی (که البته با دغدغه های کاری خارج از کشور کار سختیه!). مدت هاست که دارم روی وب داده ها (Web of Data) یا همون وب معنایی (Semantic Web) کار می کنم و فکر می کنم که جای خالی آن کاملا در فضای وب فارسی احساس می شود. قبل از هر چیز مقدمه ای در مورد وب معنایی:

وب داده ها چیست؟

وب معنایی (Semantic Web) یا وب داده ها (Web of Data)  مجموعه ای از استانداردها و الگوهای موفق برای به اشتراک گذاری داده ها و معانی آن ها بر روی وب می باشد.هدف از وب داده ها، آسان سازی دسترسی به داده ها و همچنین ایجاد برنامه های کاربردی نوآورانه دانش محور می باشد که با یکپارچه سازی جزایر داده ای مختلف،  اطلاعات و سرویس های جدیدی را برای کاربران فراهم می آورند. مدلهای نمایش داده ها  در وب معنایی نه تنها به انسان ها اجازه بهره برداری موثرتر از داده ها را می دهد بلکه به ماشین ها هم این امکان را می دهد که داده های عظیم روی وب را  پردازش کنند.
در زیر نگاهی دقیق تر به مولفه ای تشکیل دهنده وب  داده ها می اندازیم:

Continue reading

Towards component-based Linked Data applications…

“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” –Albert Einstein


Within the past months I was working hard on building a new approach for designing Semantic Web UIs. At the end I came up with the idea of Linked Data Reactor (LD-R) as a framework which transforms Linked Data into a set of reusable ReactJS components. The approach is very versatile and can be applied into different SW applications dealing with viewing/editing/browsing Linked Data. The first use case I incorporated LD-R into, was authoring metadata for datasets on RISIS project. I also exploited it for browsing data under GendERC project. I am going to announce the framework as soon I finish the documentation. The main features of LD-R include:ld-r

  • User Interface as first class citizen.
  • The first Isomorphic Semantic Web Application.
  • Flexible theming for SW apps.
  • Enable reuse of current Web components within SW apps.
  • Share components and configs rather than code!

For more information, refer to http://ld-r.org

Nowrooz 94 — new year, new thoughts…

“What you seek is seeking you.” — Rumi

+ I can literally feel the fragrance of spring. Less than one week is left to Nowrooz — Iranian/Persian New Year. Nowhere can replace your home country especially when it comes to Nowrooz. This year I really miss the celebration of Nowrooz in Iran! Last year, we had a memorial Nowrooz. Hamed’s wedding was close to Nowrooz and we also had a German guest who was with us to experience and enjoy all Persian traditions for the first time. It was one of the rare occasions after my (im)migration where the whole family gathered together. Anyways, this year we will celebrate Nowrooz in beautiful Amsterdam with nice flowers and spectacular blossom of spring.

+ Last Friday I attended prof. George Lakoff‘s talk on Big Data and the necessity to have linguists there. It was an amazing talk full of motivations and insights. Computers and AI can never replace humans! That was my conclusion there! One quote that he was emphasizing there was that education is required to know about our possibilities in life. Without education, we might look like a blind person that at some point of his life might suddenly notice what valuable things he has missed during his life and what a great potential he has wasted by just being uneducated!

+ Bita is literally becoming a professional cook! Besides the nice very healthy foods she is inventing everyday 😀 now she can bake Bibi’s chocolate cake which even tastes better than the original one! I am really proud of her…

+ The idea of Isomorphic Web application development is not a dream anymore with the tools like ReactJS and Flux architecture. You can now write code once and execute it both on client and server side using the frameworks like Fluxible. That is really fun! Isn’t it?! I am looking forward to try this new paradigm in my next Web project…

+ It’s really hard to predict your future! Even though you plan for it, it always might cast to something else (i.e. your destiny). Eventually I chose to start my new career as a postdoc researcher at KRR research group, VU University of Amsterdam. The adventure to get involved in a multidisciplinary project to further deepen my SW knowledge was the main reason for that selection. I am back to the source…


The Smell of Spring…

“Progress comes from the intelligent use of experience.” — Elbert Hubbard

+ When it comes to examination, stress is always introducing himself as a representative. This is even worse when you think it might be your last exam! However, when you have a big support on the other side of the pitch, all the negative parts of stress will vanish and you’d feel like now it is your turn!

+ To be honest, I’d never expected that someday I go that far to receive a PhD degree in computer engineering! I started to enter the field of software engineering because I loved Web, 3D animations and computer games. I remember the feeling I had when I designed my first Website using Adobe PageMill! WYSIWYG for HTML code authoring was amazing….And now after about 15 years, WYSIWYM comes into place! It’s always scary and at the same time provocative and promising when you observe the progress of the Web…

+ The mission is accomplished! I defended my PhD on 26.1.2015 with the grade magna cum laude (i.e. “with great honor”). On my path to receive this degree, I’ve been very lucky and thankful to have prof. Sören Auer as my supervisor and also as a good friend who supported me a lot and gave me the freedom to explore my ideas. I hope I can still keep on collaboration with him…

+ I got a big surprise after my defense! A very nice hat which was very artistically designed by Bita and was reflecting all my PhD contributions and concerns. I should thank Bita a lot for her great support and kindness 🙂 I hope we will soon celebrate her PhD defense as well…

Continue reading


“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme.” — Mark Twain

There is a light which never turns off. It’s always there illuminating truth in falsehood, good in bad, and justice in injustice. Life has got its own up and down, but something is always on top in all these moments.

When you breath, you feel it, when you smile you reflect it and when you cry you miss it.
There is no doubt that the beauty of life entails a reality which cannot be ignored.

It is return time now! Let’s be thankful that the future is indeed bright…