refer is an online-recommendation system based on Linked Open Data and Semantic Web Technologies. It aims to improve the user’s and author’s experience while curating and navigating in blogs, multimedia platforms, and archives.

See Use Case

Content Analysis

Annotate your content and let our Semantic Technologies find meaningful relations.

Exploratory Search

Explore the contents, discover unexpected connections and retrieve new results.

Interactive Navigation

Easily browse through an interactive network of context-related information.

How it works

Automated Annotation

We've enhanced the WP Editor with an annotation interface which enables authors to automatically scan their article for meaningful text elements.
If you're unhappy with the results, you can easily do manual corrections.

Semantic Analysis

The Yovisto Semantic Framework analyses the content in order to retrieve meaningful elements within the respective context. This allows to calculate the relationships between all meaningful elements on the entire platform or specific articles.

Content Enrichment

Next to using the existing content of the platform, we include information from free to use external knowledge bases like Wikipedia, thereby enriching the content with additional information in order to increase it’s value.

Relation Browser

All these information help us to create interactive visualizations. Users are provided with alternative means of navigating through the platform, receive useful recommendations and are able to discover previously unknown relations.


Besides browsing relations, users can explore meaningful elements on an interactive timeline. This chronological visualisation of platform contents enables a deeper understanding of temporal and historical contexts.


The refer WP Plugin is configurable with different themes and additional options to individually meet the needs of your respective platform.
Although currently implemented as a Wordpress Plugin, refer is not bound to a specific platform or environment. Please contact us if you plan to integrate some or all of the functionality into your multimedia platform.


15th International Semantic Web Conference & VOILA Workshop

In October 2016, we presented refer at the Posters and Demos Session of ISWC 2016 and at the 2nd International Workshop on Visualization and Interaction for Ontologies and Linked Data (VOILA 2016) in Kobe, Japan.

7th DBpedia Community Meeting

On September 15th, 2016, we presented refer and its new features at the DBpedia Community Meeting in Leipzig.

Image: Harald Sack (Twitter)

re:publica 2015

On May 05-07, 2015, we presented refer at re:publica, Europe's largest conference on digital culture & information society with more than 7000 visitors in 2015. We were presenting in the fabulous MIZ #InnovationSpace, where we also had a demo setup on the roof terrace. re:publica marked the end of our one-year innovation funding by Media Innovation Center (MIZ) Babelsberg. We are very thankful for the support and will now continue to gather user feedback in order to improve our tool and make refer work best for you.

Image #1: MIZ Babelsberg (Twitter)

Changing the Picture

On November 19, 2014, we presented refer at the conference Changing the Picture in Potsdam Babelsberg. Changing the Picture is a technology conference aimed at broadcast industry executives; producers, production managers, sales and distribution companies and technology providers.

Image: transfermedia; Photographer: Ulf Büschleb

13th International Semantic Web Conference

We presented the refer project at the 13th International Semantic Web Conference's industry track on October 22, 2014. ISWC is the premier international forum for the Semantic Web / Linked Data Community. There, scientists, industry specialists, and practitioners meet to discuss the future of practical, scalable, user-friendly, and game changing solutions.

See conference program

DBpedia Meetup

On September 3, 2014, we presented refer at the second DBpedia Community Meeting in Leipzig. The poster and demo session was a lot of fun and we came back with tons of new ideas for our project!

You can view the presentation slides on slideshare


On July 29, 2014, the refer project has been presented at mediaBrunch hosted by MIZ-Babelsberg, where we have received valuable feedback from local media experts.


refer was created by Tabea Tietz, Jörg Waitelonis, Joscha Jäger and Christian Hentschel
in a one year innovation project funded by Media Innovation Center (MIZ) Babelsberg.

Semantic analysis, content enrichment, backend services
Concept, Interface Design and Frontend-Development


For further information about refer, please contact:

Tabea Tietz

or ping us @ Twitter: @OpenHypervideo / @yovisto


How to cite

   author = { Tabea Tietz, Joscha Jäger, Jörg Waitelonis, Harald Sack },
   title = { Semantic Annotation and Information Visualization for Blogposts with refer },
   journal = { CEUR },
   year = { 2016 },
   volume = { 1704 },
   pages = { 28 - 40 },
   keywords = { visualization, annotation, named entity linking, DBpedia },
   url = { },
   publisher = { V. Ivanova, P. Lambrix, S. Lohmann, C. Pesquita },
   booktitle = { Proceedings of the Second International Workshop on Visualization and Interaction for Ontologies and Linked Data (VOILA '16) }