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Re: Quick Guide to Publishing a Thesaurus on the Semantic Web

From: Thomas Baker <thomas.baker@bi.fhg.de>
Date: Fri, 25 Feb 2005 16:53:33 +0100
To: Mark van Assem <mark@cs.vu.nl>
Cc: "Miles, AJ (Alistair)" <A.J.Miles@rl.ac.uk>, public-esw-thes@w3.org
Message-ID: <20050225155328.GA2100@Octavius>

Hi Mark,

On Fri, Feb 25, 2005 at 04:38:42PM +0100, Mark van Assem wrote:
> I agree that conversions are tricky, but isn't an important reason for 
> designing SKOS to be able to convert existing thesauri to the Semantic 
> Web? I'm not suggesting automated procedures, merely pointers to 
> technology/tools/guidelines people might use to design a conversion for 
> their specific case.
> My suggestion for a "conversion" section is based on the idea that 
> people that are interested in the (Quick) Guide, are interested because 
> they (a) want to know if there are benefits of an RDF version of a 
> thesaurus and (b) aren't experts so would like pointers on how to do 
> conversion. So maybe I have a wrong idea of the intended audience, what 
> is your view on this?

I agree that the message should be that this is about
converting an existing thesaurus into a Semantic-Web-enabled
form.  However, I think we should avoid giving the impression
that this is anything similar to or as automatic as a
file-format conversion.  Lots of people think of XML and
RDF not as different models, but as different file formats,
so I can easily picture someone thinking they could select
"File -> Save As: SKOS".

I have no doubt that a given XML representation of a thesaurus
could in principle be converted into an RDF representation,
but suspect that would involve careful XSLT scripting based
on an understanding of the underlying model -- not the sort of
thing that could easily be captured in a general-purpose tool.


Dr. Thomas Baker                        Thomas.Baker@izb.fraunhofer.de
Institutszentrum Schloss Birlinghoven         mobile +49-160-9664-2129
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft                          work +49-30-8109-9027
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Personal email: thbaker79@alumni.amherst.edu
Received on Friday, 25 February 2005 15:50:47 UTC

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