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Re: ProvenanceContainer (Re: Workflow Example in Formal Model HTML document)

From: Satya Sahoo <satya.sahoo@case.edu>
Date: Fri, 30 Sep 2011 12:10:36 -0400
Message-ID: <CAOMwk6ywtFLOfaaix=9XEq6V7xiAvrC4xaJvms2Eh6PdyL04yQ@mail.gmail.com>
To: Luc Moreau <L.Moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk>
Cc: Khalid Belhajjame <Khalid.Belhajjame@cs.man.ac.uk>, Stian Soiland-Reyes <soiland-reyes@cs.manchester.ac.uk>, Daniel Garijo <dgarijov@gmail.com>, Timothy Lebo <lebot@rpi.edu>, James Cheney <jcheney@inf.ed.ac.uk>, "Deborah L. McGuinness" <dlm@cs.rpi.edu>, Paolo Missier <pmissier@acm.org>, Provenance Working Group WG <public-prov-wg@w3.org>
Hi Luc,
> An entity expression *is* an assertion.
>A provenance container *is not* an assertion but contains assertions.

In the above two statements, should we be comparing an Entity with a
Provenance Container (and Entity expression with a Provenance Container

Though the PROV-DM document states that "A provenance container is not an
expression...", the example of a provenance container given in the document

provenanceContainer(decls, ids, exprs)

which is an expression.



On Thu, Sep 29, 2011 at 1:21 AM, Luc Moreau <L.Moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk>wrote:

> Hi Satya,
> A provenance container is not used to make a representation of something in
> the World. It is a construct to bundle assertions together.
> An entity expression *is* an assertion.
> A provenance container *is not* an assertion but contains assertions.
> I agree with you that your envelope contains letters. Both envelope and
> letters are things, one containing the other. That can be *represented*
> using collections and containment relationships.
> Professor Luc Moreau
> Electronics and Computer Science
> University of Southampton
> Southampton SO17 1BJ
> United Kingdom
> On 29 Sep 2011, at 03:11, "Satya Sahoo" <satya.sahoo@case.edu<mailto:
> satya.sahoo@case.edu>> wrote:
> Hi Luc,
> We were not able to reach an agreement on how ProvenanceContainer is not a
> specialized type of Entity during our ontology call on Monday due to time
> constraints.
> To help better understand the differences and similarities, I copied the
> two definition from PROV-DM to two documents and tried to compare them
> side-by-side. The following are the two definitions:
> ===Entity====
> In PROV-DM, an entity expression is a representation of an identifiable
> characterized thing.
> ===ProvenanceContainer===
> A provenance container is a house-keeping construct of PROV-DM, also
> capable of bundling PROV-DM expressions. A provenance container is not an
> expression, but can be exploited to return all the provenance assertions in
> response to a request for the provenance of something ([PROV-PAQ]).
> According to the two definitions, a provenance container can be an
> "identifiable characterized thing" (not being an expression is not a
> conceptual constraint). Also, the ability to return all provenance
> assertions in response can be applied to an Agent also - similar to a
> software agent returning the current stock market quotes.
> Further, if an Entity "contains" provenance assertions it can still be an
> "identifiable characterized thing" thereby satisfying our current definition
> of Entity.
> During our ontology telcon today Paolo explained that the primary
> difference between Entity and Provenance Container is that Provenance
> Container can "contain" provenance assertions while Entity are assumed not
> to contain assertions. But, this seems to be an application-specific
> requirement.
> For example, for a person writing a 3-page letter the three pages will be
> instances of Entity and the envelope containing the three pages will be a
> container. But for the postal service personnel, who deal with thousands of
> envelopes per day, the envelope is an Entity (and a sack for transporting
> the envelopes will be a container).
> Hence, I believe the difference between what thing is a ProvenanceContainer
> or an Entity is an application-specific perspective/requirement and there is
> no fundamental difference between the two terms - except that Provenance
> terms seems to be a specialized form an Entity in the sense that Provenance
> Container contains provenance assertions, while an Entity may or may not
> contain provenance assertions.
> Paolo suggested that we should bring up this issue to the WG mailing list -
> hence I am cc'ing the mailing list also.
> Thanks.
> Best,
> Satya
> On Wed, Sep 28, 2011 at 3:58 AM, Luc Moreau <<mailto:
> L.Moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk>L.Moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk<mailto:
> L.Moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk>> wrote:
> Hi,
> I thought we had already discussed this, but I see location as subtype of
> entity.
> Same issue as with provenance container.  This is not a subtype of entity.
> Luc
> --
> Professor Luc Moreau
> Electronics and Computer Science   tel:   +44 23 8059 4487
> <tel:%2B44%2023%208059%204487>
> University of Southampton          fax:   +44 23 8059 2865
> <tel:%2B44%2023%208059%202865>
> Southampton SO17 1BJ               email: <mailto:l.moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk>
> l.moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk<mailto:l.moreau@ecs.soton.ac.uk>
> United Kingdom                     <http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~lavm>
> http://www.ecs.soton.ac.uk/~lavm
Received on Friday, 30 September 2011 16:11:18 GMT

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