An interesting short note by Dieter Fensel and Frank van Harmelen in the March/April issue of IEEE Internet Computing, entitled “Unifying Reasoning and Search to Web Scale”. Unfortunately, the IEEE articles are available for subscribers only, but here is the abstract:
Researchers have developed reasoning methods for rather small, closed, trustworthy, consistent, and static domains, but Web-scale reasoning remains elusive. The authors seek to merge semantic reasoning and search in something new that reflects proper unification without adding bizarre syntax to programming languages or nonscalable logic to superficially align Web principles and reasoning.
I think the essence of their argument is well summarized in a pseudo-code for how reasoning can or should happen on very very large scale (ie, on Web scale):
do draw a sample, do the reasoning on the sample; if you have more time, and/or if you don't trust the result, then draw a bigger sample, repeat
Of course, the devil is in the details, ie, this is a general approach rather then a solution (and the authors do not claim it otherwise). But it is certainly an interesting direction to consider!
(Bibliographic details: “Unifying Reasoning and Search to Web Scale”, by Dieter Fensel and Frank van Harmelen, IEEE Internet Computing, Volume 11, No. 2, March/April 2007.)