|Oded Nov, Assistant Professor of Management|
In 2006, 17 years after he invented the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee and colleagues created “web science,” a discipline designed to study the Web’s far-ranging impact on society.
Mr. Berners-Lee and Nigel Shadbolt trace web science's origins and aims in the October, 2008 print edition of Scientific American. They write that “understanding the Web requires insights from sociology and psychology every bit as much as from mathematics and computer science.”
In that same article (“Web Science Emerges”), the authors highlight Polytechnic Institute of NYU’s Oded Nov’s contribution to the new discipline.
According to the authors, Professor Nov’s research “is beginning to ascertain why Wikipedians post entries and what motivates their activity; the psychological drivers that are revealed [by such research] will help us understand how to encourage people to contribute to the Semantic Web.”
The Semantic Web, the authors explain, is “a network of data on the Web” that “promises to give much more targeted" results to Web searches.