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Re: exchanging OWL through RIF

From: Michael Kifer <kifer@cs.sunysb.edu>
Date: Thu, 02 Mar 2006 18:21:41 -0500
To: Jim Hendler <hendler@cs.umd.edu>
Cc: "Vincent, Paul D" <PaulVincent@fairisaac.com>, edbark@nist.gov, "RIF WG" <public-rif-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <28648.1141341701@kiferserv.kiferhome.com>

> Back before the group was chartered, I had shared some use cases for 
> OWL meets Rules in various member lists.  One of the examples was:
> At 19:52 -0400 6/5/05, Jim Hendler wrote:
> >1 - Consider an organization like the  Natl Cancer Inst which has a 
> >big OWL ontology (i.e. has a number of full time people working on 
> >curation, versioning, etc).  They or some other org decide they'd 
> >like to use it on databases and datasets for datacleansing or other 
> >"rule based" operation.
> >    Recoding the whole into a new rules language would be 
> >prohibitively expensive unless there is some sort of automagic 
> >translator of some or all of the RDFS/OWL they use.
> This, I think, is more like what Ed was proposing.  I am afraid I'm 
> not familiar enough with some of the things Paul says in this thread, 
> but I think this pushes it a little further.   I can give more 
> details of a cancer example, but it's a lot like what Ed talked 
> about, but I don't need to postulate multiple organizations - all I 
> need is one group doing "modeling" and another trying to use those 
> models for "data related" ops (i.e. open world OWL meets Closed World 
> rules)

The whole point is that you don't need translators! For this scenario, you
need to interoperate, not to exchange, and this is much simpler and much
more useful.


>   -JH
> At 14:59 -0800 3/2/06, Vincent, Paul D wrote:
> >I may be a little off base here, but: design-time model interchange 
> >from say OWL to a (production) rules engine, where the (vocabulary) 
> >"rules" would map to the object (/data) model the rules engine works 
> >with, could in theory be covered by the ODM --> class diagram + PRR 
> >mapping using MDA.
> >
> >[Caveat: The role of OWL in rule interchange seems (to me) to be 
> >around describing the context (ie vocabulary) that the rules are 
> >specified in. The target *must* already have its own ontology/data 
> >to be mapped - after all, sending rules + data is not very useful 
> >outside of verification tasks (as indicated in Harold Boley's F2F1 
> >use case showing rules + data = results etc)].
> >
> >Another transformation that could possibly be done in RIF would be 
> >OWL <-- --> SBVR, although again this is more likely to be a 
> >design-time issue when in the context of conventional IT systems 
> >(and again could also be done via an ODM <-- --> SBVR "model"). But 
> >for ontologists / business consultants sharing vocabularies across 
> >the semantic web, maybe this would be interesting.
> >
> >I await the OWL experts' views on this with interest!
> >
> >Paul Vincent
> >Fair Isaac Blaze Advisor --- Business Rule Management
> >mobile: +44 (0)781 493 7229 ... office: +44 (0)20 7871 7229 
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: public-rif-wg-request@w3.org 
> >[mailto:public-rif-wg-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Ed Barkmeyer
> >Sent: Thursday, March 02, 2006 9:33 PM
> >To: Michael Kifer
> >Cc: RIF WG
> >Subject: Re: exchanging OWL through RIF
> >
> >
> >Michael Kifer wrote:
> >
> >>  I am having a second thought about the requirement that OWL should be
> >>  exchangeable through RIF by encoding it in FOL (which I am guilty of voting
> >>  for also and now attribute it to sleep deprivation :-).
> >>
> >>  I think this requirement is completely misguided.
> >
> >I think the above statement of the requirement can be misunderstood, but I
> >don't think the intent is at all misguided.
> >
> >It is not a matter of "exchanging an OWL ontology"; the requirement is to
> >deliver the semantic content of an OWL ontology as a ruleset, so that a rules
> >engine can incorporate that content into its rulebase.
> >
> >A pseudo use-case: A given site "Uhu" using OWL ontologies and an OWL engine
> >may find it necessary to communicate with a site "Rex" that has only
> >"rulesets" and "rule engines" for some task in which Uhu needs the support of
> >Rex.  In this case, it is important that Uhu be able to convert the relevant
> >OWL ontology to a "rules" (RIF) form, so that it can be used by Rex in
> >performing its supporting task.  And the requirement for RIF is that its "FOL
> >subset" be able to capture the semantics of the OWL ontology.
> >
> >The alternative view of this scenario is that Uhu simply sends the OWL
> >ontology, and it is incumbent on Rex to convert the OWL ontology to its
> >internal "rules" form.  There is nothing wrong with this view, except that it
> >has no role for RIF -- it makes the OWL->rules conversion a software project
> >for the Rex engine, and another project for the ILOG engine, and another for
> >the Jena engine, etc., creating lots of work for the engine providers and many
> >third parties who are familiar with the proprietary rules forms.  By
> >comparison, any tool that can convert OWL to RIF without loss (standard form
> >to standard form) gives Uhu what is need to work with Rex, and also Rudi and
> >Regina, no matter what rules engines they have.
> >
> >>  For interoperability, we will need to be able to send queries to OWL
> >>  engines. Representation of those queries will need to be hashed out later.
> >
> >This is, of course, exactly the inverse use case.  Here the Rex site needs the
> >assistance of the Uhu site in making some inference.  But Rex does not need
> >RIF for this at all, only something like SPARQL.  But suppose that Rex needs
> >to send this ruleset to Regina, so that Regina can use its local KB to assist
> >Rex in making some inferences.  Then when Rex sends the RIF ruleset to Regina,
> >the SPARQL queries to Uhu that appear in some of the antecedents must have a
> >RIF representation.  (And I think this is in some sense the degenerate case.
> >It is entirely possible that Regina is a 'hybrid' site, combining both DL and
> >Rules reasoning capabilities, with the consequence that Regina wants to
> >"understand" the SPARQL query, not just blindly send it to Uhu.)
> >
> >It seems to me that "Web-based Rules exchange" demands that we support BOTH of
> >these two use cases, not just the latter.
> >
> >-Ed
> >
> >--
> >Edward J. Barkmeyer                        Email: edbark@nist.gov
> >National Institute of Standards & Technology
> >Manufacturing Systems Integration Division
> >100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8263                Tel: +1 301-975-3528
> >Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8263                FAX: +1 301-975-4482
> >
> >"The opinions expressed above do not reflect consensus of NIST,
> >   and have not been reviewed by any Government authority."
> -- 
> Professor James Hendler			  Director
> Joint Institute for Knowledge Discovery	  	  301-405-2696
> UMIACS, Univ of Maryland			  301-314-9734 (Fax)
> College Park, MD 20742	 		  http://www.cs.umd.edu/~hendler
> Web Log: http://www.mindswap.org/blog/author/hendler
Received on Thursday, 2 March 2006 23:23:17 UTC

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