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Talis: Making a Business through the Semantic Web

Smart Libraries Newsletter [June 2012]


At least some of the awareness of linked data in the library community can be attributed to Talis, a UK-based company that has promoted the topic internationally. Richa rd Wallis, who recently joined OCLC following a 20-year involvement with Talis, was its Technology Evangelist. In recent years Talis has been in transition from a company offering traditional library automation products to one focused on business activities surrounding the Semantic Web. In March 2011, Talis sold its library automation division, which supported the Alto library management system and the Talis online catalog, to Capita Group, choosing to focus solely on products and services related to Semantic Web and linked data.

Following the divestment, Talis was a company focused not so much on libraries as on its platform, based on Semantic Web technologies, and on related consulting services. One product that proved to be especially successful is Aspire, a tool for creating resource lists to support faculty and teaching in educational institutions. Talis also spun off a subsidiary called Kasabi that offered services for hosting data sets in a linked data model with APIs to facilitate their integration into other products or services. Kasabi positions itself as “an online marketplace that brings developers and data publishers together to enable new business models for consumers and producers of data at all scales” (

In addition to Wallis, other key staff have left Talis in recent months. Ian Davis, chief technology officer and director for Talis, and chief executive officer for the Kasabi subsidiary, departed in March 2012. Rob Styles, chief technical consultant departed in April 2012. The core management team at Talis remains intact, including Dave Errington, its chief executive officer, and Justin Levesley, chief strategy officer.

View Citation
Publication Year:2012
Type of Material:Article
Language English
Published in: Smart Libraries Newsletter
Publication Info:Volume 32 Number 06
Issue:June 2012
Publisher:ALA TechSource
Place of Publication:Chicago, IL
Company: Talis
Record Number:16874
Last Update:2023-01-25 11:12:08
Date Created:2012-05-25 14:02:03