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This is an archived syllabus from 2013-2014

Enrolment on this course unit is limited to 61 students.

COMP38120 Documents, Services and Data on the Web syllabus 2013-2014

COMP38120 Documents, Services and Data on the Web

Level 3
Credits: 20
Enrolled students: 65

Course leader: Norman Paton

Additional staff: view all staff


  • Pre-Requisite (Compulsory): COMP18112
  • Pre-Requisite (Compulsory): COMP23111
  • Pre-Requisite (Compulsory): COMP28112

Assessment methods

  • 60% Written exam
  • 40% Coursework
Sem 1 w1-5,7-10 Workshop Collab Mon 13:00 - 13:00 -
Sem 1 w11-12 Lab LF31 Mon 13:00 - 13:00 -
Sem 2 w19-20,26-28,32 Lab 3rdLab Fri 13:00 - 13:00 -
Sem 2 w21-25,33 Workshop Collab Fri 13:00 - 13:00 -
Themes to which this unit belongs
  • Web and Distributed Systems


The web is a rich and rapidly evolving resource. In this course unit we will explore principles and techniques that underpin the web, and investigate how these are applied to provide webs of documents, services and data. In so doing, the concepts and standards associated with resource identification, access, description and scalability will be introduced, along with recurring functionalities such as publication and search.

This is a 20 credit course unit that runs for the entire year. Each semester involves workshops that introduce and provide experience with the key technical concepts, which are then brought together in an individual software project that will include the development of scalable search techniques for documents and data.


The aim of this course unit is to provide insights into and experience of techniques relating to documents, services and data on the web. The approach is that fundamental drivers, concepts and techniques for web documents, services and data are presented and discussed in workshop settings, and that a laboratory applies and evaluates the techniques in practice.


Enabling the web

  • The internet and the web.
  • Basic platform: URI, HTTP, DNS.
  • Recurring themes: browsing, searching, crawling, linking, annotating, dynamism, scale.
  • Web standards: HTTP, XML, RDF.

The document web

  • Document management.
  • Crawling and analysing the web.
  • Information retrieval: meeting information needs, indexing, ranking.
  • Web graph mining, including PageRank.
  • Enhancing search through analytics and annotation.

The services web

  • Services and the web.
  • Types of service: software, platform, infrastructure.
  • Cloud services: drivers and challenges.
  • Developing scalable cloud services, including map/reduce.

The web of data

  • Data on the web, shallow and deep web.
  • Linked open data, and the linked data principles.
  • Linked data design.
  • Publishing linked data.
  • Consuming and aggregating linked data.

Feedback methods

The unit consists of workshops and laboratories: both such formats are interactive and enable continuous formative feedback. Summative feedback will be provided on two assessed laboratory activities.

Study hours

Employability skills

  • Analytical skills
  • Innovation/creativity
  • Problem solving

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, a student will be able to:

Learning outcomes are detailed on the COMP38120 course unit syllabus page on the School of Computer Science's website for current students.

Reading list

No reading list found for COMP38120.

Additional notes

Course unit materials

Links to course unit teaching materials can be found on the School of Computer Science website for current students.