W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-prov-wg@w3.org > April 2012

PROV-ISSUE-337 (agent-and-entity): agent should not be a subclass of entity [prov-dm]

From: Provenance Working Group Issue Tracker <sysbot+tracker@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2012 21:53:21 +0000
Message-Id: <E1SEpBh-00071y-NC@tibor.w3.org>
To: public-prov-wg@w3.org
PROV-ISSUE-337 (agent-and-entity): agent should not be a subclass of entity [prov-dm]

http://www.w3.org/2011/prov/track/issues/337

Raised by: Luc Moreau
On product: prov-dm

Currently, prov-dm defines agent as follows:

An agent is a type of entity that bears some form of responsibility for an activity taking place. An agent is a particular type of Entity. This means that the model can be used to express provenance of the agents themselves.

While it is nice to be able to express the provenance of agents, it is not obvious to me that agents should always be entities.  In fact, they could be activities.

Consider a collaboration activity, to which several agents ag1, ag2, ..., agn are associated. Why can't we see it as an agent too? 
activity(collaboration)
wasAssociatedWith(collaboration,agi,contract)

agent(collaboration)
wasAttributed(nice-piece-of-work,collaboration)


So, I would propose the following alternative definition:


An agent is something that bears some form of responsibility for an activity taking place. 

A given agent may be a particular type of Entity or Activity. This means that the model can be used to express provenance of the agents themselves.


Looking at prov-o, I notice that they have already defined an agent as subclass of owl:Thing.
Received on Monday, 2 April 2012 21:53:24 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0+W3C-0.50 : Thursday, 26 April 2012 13:07:03 GMT