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Re: ACTION-264: Discuss imports with Tim Redmond.

From: Timothy Redmond <tredmond@stanford.edu>
Date: Wed, 18 Feb 2009 11:30:44 -0800
To: Bijan Parsia <bparsia@cs.man.ac.uk>
Cc: Ian Horrocks <ian.horrocks@comlab.ox.ac.uk>, "Peter F. Patel-Schneider" <pfps@research.bell-labs.com>, Alan Ruttenberg <alanruttenberg@gmail.com>, public-owl-wg@w3.org
Message-Id: <1234985444.5580.78.camel@smi-tredmond-li.stanford.edu>

I wanted to be sure that I understood where things stand with this
issue.  It seems to me that XML Catalogs can be used to satisfy the use
cases that I have. (I have another use case where XML Catalogs would
also seem to work).  But this only works if a critical mass of the tools
adopt or at least support this mechanism.  

For example, I know a group that has users who check ontologies out from
svn and edit them.  This group of users all favor different tool sets
and I think that one of their challenges is getting these tools to work
nicely together.  Putting an XML catalog in svn will only help if
TopBraid, OntoEdit, Protege 4, etc all can read this format.  Having
different repository formats for different tools is the status quo and
is awkward.  Also, a person using the pellet tool may have trouble if
the pellet tool does not understand where his ontologies live.  (I have
also had this problem with owl syntax validators.) In the use case
example that I give below, the XML Catalog is only useful if the
ontology api in question can use the Catalog.

So my question is, do the other members of the working group feel that
XML Catalogs are an acceptable compromise or solution?  If so is there
some way that the owl working group can encourage tool builders to use
XML Catalogs?  Or would we recommend low level mechanisms that redirect
the URL based IO independently of the tool set?

-Timothy

BTW - Here is another use case (from one of my past lives):

I have another use case which may be useful.  In many cases applications
cannot trust or depend on the internet.  If the application in question
is a java application, then it makes sense that the ontologies in
question probably live in a jar file.  Since Java can find resources
through URL's (it uses 

   jar:file:--path--!--path--

) one could put an XML Catalog in the jar file as a resource and use
this to redirect the ontology references.  This depends on an assumption
about the jar class loaders and I am not sure if this is documented.
But it looks likely that this approach would work with the current Java
implementations.

At the time I solved this problem with a low level intercept,
URL.setURLStreamHandlerFactory, but it is not clear that this was a very
good idea.

On Tue, 2009-02-17 at 11:51 -0800, Timothy Redmond wrote:
> >>
> 
> >> Does this meet your concern?
> 
> Yes I think that it does.  Thanks Bijan (and all).
> 
> -Timothy
> 
Received on Wednesday, 18 February 2009 19:31:30 GMT

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