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Re: Rich Annotations

From: Peter F. Patel-Schneider <pfps@research.bell-labs.com>
Date: Mon, 26 Nov 2007 06:19:08 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <20071126.061908.184852853.pfps@research.bell-labs.com>
To: bparsia@cs.man.ac.uk
Cc: public-owl-wg@w3.org

From: Bijan Parsia <bparsia@cs.man.ac.uk>
Subject: Re: Rich Annotations
Date: Mon, 26 Nov 2007 10:24:53 +0000

> On 26 Nov 2007, at 09:13, Peter F. Patel-Schneider wrote:
> >
> > From: Bijan Parsia <bparsia@cs.man.ac.uk>
> > Subject: Re: Rich Annotations
> > Date: Sun, 25 Nov 2007 15:40:06 +0000
> >
> >> On Nov 25, 2007, at 3:09 PM, Peter F. Patel-Schneider wrote:
> >>
> >>> From: Bijan Parsia <bparsia@cs.man.ac.uk>
> >>> Subject: Re: Rich Annotations
> >>> Date: Sun, 25 Nov 2007 13:48:08 +0000
> >>>
> >>>> On Nov 25, 2007, at 1:04 PM, Peter F. Patel-Schneider wrote:
> [snip]
> >> One checks with the associated spec.
> >
> > Where?  Who determines?  How specified?
> Hmm. These don't seem to be serious questions.

Nope, I consider these to be very serious questions.  There has been 
considerable debate over related issues, including the "social meaning"
debate (see 
http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/meetings/tech-200303/ and

> Each space has an associated name (an URI, presumably). In the normal  
> way for *anything*, there may or may not be a specification  
> associated with terms related (in some manner) to that URI. Since  
> this is bog standard across the W3C, I don't feel I need to say  
> anything beyond that. I don't think I'm making anything *more*  
> broken, if you think existing ways are broken.

In my opinion what makes the current situation not completely broken is
that there is a fairly well defined notion of which organizations are in
charge of providing the specifications and that only certain kinds of
organizations (IETF and W3C, mostly) play this role.  Your proposal
appears to delegate this authority to arbitrary players, who may play by
rules different from those normally employed in the WWW.

> How do you know what the correct processing of an OWL document is?  
> Who determines? How specified?

Well, as OWL is a Semantic Web language and W3C is the place to look for
specifications of semantic web languages, I look for the W3C
recommendation for OWL.  Determining the part of the OWL recommendation
to use and how to understand it turns out to be rather tricky.

> >>>   If not, then how can one determine conformance?
> >>
> >> By checking with the associated spec.
> >
> >>> I could
> >>> cliam that my tool understands all annotations; how could you
> >>> refute my
> >>> claim?
> >>
> >> By pointing to the associated spec.
> >
> > Suppose I claim that you are pointing to the wrong thing?
> I hereby claim that my understanding of what a sequence of letters  
> means is *constitutive* of its meaning. I understand the sequence,  
> when entered by you in an email message as above, "Suppose I claim  
> that you are pointing to the wrong thing?" means "Bijan, I  
> wholeheartedly support your proposal in every detail. Good show."
> What's the difference? Nothing. There's no enforcement mechanism for  
> *any* of our specs other than social convention, moral suasion, and  
> market forces. Again, I'm no worse off and I fail to see that you are  
> any better off. Suppose I claim my tool understands all syntactic  
> extensions. How could you refute my claim?
> In the normal way, by pointing to the relevant associated specs. I  
> could dispute their relevance, or your interpretation of them, or the  
> meaning of "supports".

Without something in the W3C OWL recommendation as to how to get to the
correct spec, then there is indeed an issue of which spec to use.  I
don't see anything in the current spec or in your proposal that tells
how to make this link.

> >> It isn't magic, just a hook. This is no different than the current
> >> situation *except* I have a way of indicating to arbitrary tools that
> >> I've included an extension. That's all this is doing.
> >
> > Yes, this may be *all*, but it seems to me to be a very big all.
> Yeah, and I have no idea why.

Because it pushes parts of the OWL specification into other places.


> >>> [...]
> >>>
> >>>> Right but I can at least see which subClass axioms are disjointess
> >>>> axioms, etc. Again, if my extension is radically non local, that  
> >>>> will
> >>>> be of limited use, but you are just pointing out a limitation.  
> >>>> Yeah,
> >>>> it has limits. So? Constraints, non-mon inheritence, probabilities,
> >>>> axiom schemas, etc. all seem to work fairly reasonably.
> >>>
> >>> It would be useful to have some examples of how these sorts of  
> >>> things
> >>> would work.
> >>
> >> I listed examples. If you would like more detail, feel free to ask on
> >> any of them. Pronto is described in a series of blog posts.
> >
> > Yes please, I need pointers and details.
> I need specifics as to where you think the examples I've already  
> given are deficient in supplying your needs. After all, there *are*  
> pointers in:
> 	http://www.w3.org/2007/OWL/wiki/Annotation_System#Examples

What I see there are three examples of extensions to OWL.  For
constraints and OntoClean, I don't see a worked-out solution as to how
the annotation proposal would support the extension.  For Pronto, I see
annotations, but no annotation spaces.  (By the way, how can I find the
ontology file:/C:/kl/ClarkParsia/Cancer/Ontology/cancer_ra.owl,
referenced in

> Perhaps you could work through how one of them would work and I could  
> check to see if our understandings aligned.

No thanks.   

How about you work through how one of them would work and I could see if
I can understand more?

> Cheers,
> Bijan.

Peter F. Patel-Schneider
Bell Labs Research
Received on Monday, 26 November 2007 11:35:32 UTC

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