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RE: Ontology editor + why RDF?

From: Waard, Anita de A (ELS-AMS) <A.dewaard@elsevier.com>
Date: Mon, 10 Apr 2006 10:47:18 +0100
Message-ID: <D3E7986165D790478082E01DAD5DC36914510538@elsamss31748.elsevier.com>
To: public-semweb-lifesci@w3.org

In this discussion, I would be intersted in separating:

A. WHO does what (and do they charge for it): 
- Who owns and distributes content (free for all vs. sold for a fee)
- Who owns and distributes thesauri/ontologies (,,)
- Who connects thesauri/ontologies to a) text (indexing) and b) other
thesauri (thesaurus mapping) (,,)

B. HOW do they do this:
- Using open (free) technology vs. using commercially available technology 
And 
- Using interoperable formats vs. using proprietary formats. 

My understanding was/is that the semantic web is specifically about doing B:
using openly avilable technologies and interoperable formats, to access and
link enriched content through thesauri/ontologies. 

It seems in these discussions some items from list A. are getting added as
well e.g.:
[Jim Myers] 
> the public (at least domain specialists) should be able to specify models
and 
> publish information conforming to them without help from knowledge 
> engineers or software developers
and
[Jim Hendler]
> One thing I'd love to see would be some interoperability between the
products of 
> various publishers by linking their thesauri/vocabulary/ontologies.  

Interestingly enough, the use cases that I have seen where semantic web
technologies are actually being used in large-scale practice are not on the
'open' web, but instead inside large organisations: Siemens, large
hospitals, some major pharma conpanies. There, interoperability is key, but
the content and the thesauri are usually not free (either in the sense of
'without cost' or in the sense of 'available to all') nor is the
annotation/indexing done by 'the general public'. Rather, specialists
(knowledge engineers and software developers) set up a system that uses
RDF/OWL for accessing and linking internal, commercial sources - sometimes
to the outside world, but sometimes specifically to internal proprietary
sources. 
Also, linking taxonomies is done in various commmercial products. 

So my question is: if (content and indexing) offerings are commercial and
proprietary, does it make them less "semantic"? Does interoperability
require openness?

Anita de Waard
Advanced Technology Group
Elsevier, Amsterdam
a.dewaard@elsevier.com
Content and Knowledge Engineering
University of Utrecht
http://www.cs.uu.nl/people/anita 
Received on Monday, 10 April 2006 09:50:55 UTC

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