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Best Practice for Renaming OWL Vocabulary Elements

From: Martin Hepp <martin.hepp@ebusiness-unibw.org>
Date: Thu, 21 Apr 2011 11:46:31 +0200
Message-Id: <50028450-7191-4385-A470-61ED6D6CC885@ebusiness-unibw.org>
To: semantic-web@w3.org, public-lod@w3.org
Dear all:

I am considering to rename a few conceptual elements in the GoodRelations ontology. However, they are already in use in data, queries, and applications. Thus, I am thinking of the least intrusive way of implementing this. I think this question is also relevant for many other OWL vocabularies on the Web.

Attached, please find my proposal. It critically depends on the ability of typical triple-stores to compute basic(*) inferences for

- owl:equivalentProperty for owl:DatatypeProperty and owl:ObjectProperty entities,
- owl:equivalentClass for pairs of owl:Class and
- owl:sameAs for pairs of "ontological" instances, e.g. value nodes defined in the vocabulary.

With "basic", I mean that additional triples for the additional class membership or property or instance must be materialized; this could be a subset of the complete theoretical implications.
As far as I know, Virtuoso does support this to a sufficient degree, but I am unsure about other parts of widely deployed infrastructure.

It would be no problem to express the necessary inferences by means of a SPARQL CONSTRUCT rule or in SPIN.

Please share any suggestions and concerns with me.

Old, but in use:
---------------
foo:LongClassName a owl:Class ;
	rdfs:label "LongClassName" .

foo:LongPropertyName1 a owl:DatatypeProperty ;
	rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
	rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1" .

foo:LongPropertyName2 a owl:ObjectProperty ;
	rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
	rdfs:range foo:SomeOtherClass1 ;	
	rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1" .

foo:LongNameIndividual a foo:SomeOtherClass2 ;
	rdfs:label "LongNameIndividual" .

Now, we want to rename those elements as follows, without breaking old data nor old queries / applications:

foo:LongClassName --> foo:NewClassName
foo:LongPropertyName1 --> foo:NewPropertyName1
foo:LongPropertyName2 --> foo:NewPropertyName2
foo:LongNameIndividual --> foo:NewNameIndividual

Proposal:
--------
a) Step 1: Define new classes, properties, individuals and link back to their old variants

foo:NewClassName a owl:Class ;
	owl:equivalentClass foo:LongClassName .
	rdfs:label "NewClassName (Note: This was foo:LongClassName previously)" .

foo:NewPropertyName1 a owl:DatatypeProperty ;
	owl:equivalentProperty foo:LongPropertyName1 ;
	rdfs:domain foo:NewClassName ;
	rdfs:label "NewPropertyName1 (Note: This was foo:LongPropertyName1 previously)" .

foo:NewPropertyName2 a owl:ObjectProperty ;
	owl:equivalentProperty foo:LongPropertyName2 ;
	rdfs:domain foo:NewClassName ;
	rdfs:range foo:SomeOtherClass1 ;	
	rdfs:label "NewPropertyName2 (Note: This was foo:LongPropertyName2 previously)" .

foo:NewNameIndividual a foo:SomeOtherClass2 ;
	owl:sameAs foo:LongNameIndividual ;
	rdfs:label "NewNameIndividual (Note: This was foo:LongNameIndividual previously)" .

b) Step 2: Deprecate the old elements in OWL 2 style (using owl:deprecated)
foo:LongClassName a owl:Class;
	owl:deprecated true;
	rdfs:label "LongClassName - Deprecated, use foo:NewClassName instead" .

foo:LongPropertyName1 a owl:DatatypeProperty ;
	owl:deprecated true;
	rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
	rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1 - Deprecated, use foo:NewPropertyName1 instead" .

foo:LongPropertyName2 a owl:ObjectProperty ;
	owl:deprecated true ;
	rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
	rdfs:range foo:SomeOtherClass1 ;	
	rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1 - Deprecated, use foo:NewPropertyName2 instead" .

foo:LongNameIndividual a foo:SomeOtherClass2 ;
	owl:deprecated true ;
	rdfs:label "LongNameIndividual - Deprecated, use foo:NewNameIndividual instead" .

c) Since the owl:deprecated property is not defined in OWL1, I would also add the following axiom in order to remain within OWL 1 DL:
#OWL 1 DL compatibility of the OWL2 deprecated property
owl:deprecated a owl:AnnotationProperty.

Thanks in advance!

Best

Martin

--------------------------------------------------------
martin hepp
e-business & web science research group
universitaet der bundeswehr muenchen

e-mail:  hepp@ebusiness-unibw.org
phone:   +49-(0)89-6004-4217
fax:     +49-(0)89-6004-4620
www:     http://www.unibw.de/ebusiness/ (group)
         http://www.heppnetz.de/ (personal)
skype:   mfhepp 
twitter: mfhepp
Received on Thursday, 21 April 2011 09:46:57 UTC

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