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Re: [hcls] User interfaces for writing / querying RDF: Leeet

From: Matthias Samwald <samwald@gmx.at>
Date: Wed, 12 Sep 2007 10:05:11 +0200
To: Chris Mungall <cjm@fruitfly.org>
Cc: public-semweb-lifesci <public-semweb-lifesci@w3.org>
Message-Id: <1189584311.5936.18.camel@leterel>

> Note that it's impossible to answer the intended query above without  
> SPARQL-DL - and the most intuitive syntax for this kind of query in  
> SPARQL-DL may not be triple-based, cosmeticised or not. E.g. "ALL  
> astrocyte develops_from SOME ?"
> I am heavily biased towards TBox queries - for ABox queries, a  
> syntactic patina over SPARQL may be very welcome.

At the moment I am thinking about ways of expressing subsets of OWL DL
in a way that is more easily mapped to the RDF triple model. I simply
cannot accept how complicated and sometimes unintuitive the
representation of certain OWL constructs in RDF is, although I really
tried to. For example, we could have a convention that the triple
"Class1 property1 Class2" could be interpreted as as 'some values from'
restriction. Of course, not all of OWL could be represented in such a
simplified RDF format (e.g., how would we represent 'all values from'?).

Yes, I know that we can create OWL APIs and dedicated OWL query
languages to make it work. However, I think that technologies should
have a certain 'elegance' to find widespread adoption. If we look at
some of our HCLS ontologies, we are seeing a XML document that
represents a RDF graph in an unnecessarily complicated and error-prone
way. And if we look at the RDF graph we see that it represents an OWL
ontology in an unnecessarily complicated and error-prone way. A
developer that is new to all these technologies might get the impression
that the Semantic Web layer cake [1] is just a heap of bad compromises
and failed attempts of creating compatibility. 

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:W3c-semantic-web-layers.svg

Matthias Samwald
Received on Wednesday, 12 September 2007 08:05:24 UTC

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