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Re: geo example

From: Stella Dextre Clarke <sdclarke@lukehouse.demon.co.uk>
Date: Wed, 28 Apr 2004 09:31:11 +0100
To: <public-esw-thes@w3.org>
Message-ID: <000001c42cfb$29751950$0402a8c0@DELL>

Intriguing to notice (on the same page originally referneced) that the
Open Directory has at least 5 subtly different "concept/ideas of the
place Bristol" depending on whether the user approaches them via
Gloucestershire, South Gloucs, Somerset, etc. You can tell they are
different, because they have different numbers of postings. I suppose
SKOS copes happily with representing them differently?

NB, if you follow the traditional thesaurus model, the preferred term
"Bristol" would be allowed to have only one meaning, and multiple access
routes would be permitted using a polyhierarchical structure.

Stella Dextre Clarke
Information Consultant
Luke House, West Hendred, Wantage, Oxon, OX12 8RR, UK
Tel: 01235-833-298
Fax: 01235-863-298

-----Original Message-----
From: public-esw-thes-request@w3.org
[mailto:public-esw-thes-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Dan Brickley
Sent: 27 April 2004 16:55
To: Bernard Vatant
Cc: public-esw-thes@w3.org
Subject: Re: geo example

* Bernard Vatant <bernard.vatant@mondeca.com> [2004-04-27 17:26+0200]
> Dan
> > http://dmoz.org/Regional/Europe/United_Kingdom/England/Bristol/
> > shows a topic from open directory.
> Would you call this resource a "subject indicator", to use topic maps
> dialect?

I don't know enough about the detailed mysteries of topicmaps there, but

certainly this seems close. It is, colloqially, a subject or topic, 
thought of a thing-in-itself, and distinct from both the thing(s) that
topic represents, and from documents and data representing either the
topic or the, er, subject of the topic.

I give up! this terminology is too overloaded to say anything ;)

Put another way... the "etc/England/Bristol/" node in the DMoz topic
graph (and its equiv in SKOS) are things that represent "the
concept/idea of the place Bristol", rather than representing Bristol
directly. There is an 
additional level of indirection compared to 'raw' RDF (and OWL).

> > I can imagine how this works in SKOS. And
> > how we might represent Bristol as a place in RDF. For discussion:
> > how to represent (to machines) the connection between these two 
> > worlds.
> >
> > We could easily redo the open directory (dmoz, see
> > http://dmoz.org/rdf.html)
> > in SKOS.
> As an on'n off ODP editor [1] I had proposed internally to have a look
> at integration of ODP in the SW framework. Not with a great feedback, 
> actually. Remember that RDF dump of dmoz uses an old RDF format.

Yep, it is pretty scruffy, was backed by very early RDF code from Guha
and friends when at Netscape/Mozilla. There are scripts around to,
rather minimally, fix it up (namespace URIs, character encoding, etc).
Those scripts could probably be adapted to emit SKOS rather easily. 

> > And we can doubtless find some RDF representation of Bristol as a
> > member of a class "City", with location info, population, etc...
> >
> > My hypothesis is that a new property in SKOS, skos:conceptualizes,
> > could be used to relate bristol-the-skos-concept to 
> > bristol-the-thing-in-the-world.
>  ... looks to me indeed very close to the notion of "subjet
> indicator".

I suspect so too. Topicmap people have often said that RDF confuses
things with their representations. I believe RDF allows such modelling 
errors to be made, but also that it allows perfect clarity. TMs, on my 
understanding, try to have more built-in facilities for preserving 
those distinctions.


Received on Wednesday, 28 April 2004 04:31:22 UTC

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