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Re: [OEP] Draft of a note on n-ary relations

From: Natasha Noy <noy@SMI.Stanford.EDU>
Date: Wed, 5 May 2004 18:02:38 -0700
Message-Id: <11902D56-9EF9-11D8-881D-000A958B5C28@smi.stanford.edu>
Cc: Alan Rector <rector@cs.man.ac.uk>, swbp <public-swbp-wg@w3.org>
To: Jeremy Carroll <jjc@hplb.hpl.hp.com>

> Two comments:
> 1) I think it would be worth showing this design pattern also just 
> with RDFS, and hence broadening the scope of this note to
> [[
> In OWL *and RDF*, a property is a binary relation: it links two 
> individuals or an individual and a value. How do we represent 
> relations among more than two individuals?
> ]]
> (basically this would use global range and domain constraints to 
> achieve some of the effect)

I agree that this would be useful and indeed there is nothing 
OWL-specific here -- the problem is just the same in RDF (or in any 
language that doesn't have n-ary relations). And the WG is concerned 
with SW in general and not just OWL after all.

In terms of simplicity though, I would a bit concerned about having too 
much branching: here is pattern 1, and here it is in OWl, and here is 
the same thing in RDF, but it will look slightly differently (using 
domain and ranges, etc.) Any idea on how to structure this so that 
readers interested in one language or the other can get what they need 
without filtering through too much extraneous (for them) information?

Basically, back to the issue of what a good template for this would be.

> 2) I winced somewhat at the use of the words "reify" and "reified"
> RDF reification is, to me at least, a bit of a mess, and use of these 
> words will make the RDF literate reader think of RDF reification. I 
> realise that the use in this note is appropriate, and in some ways not 
> actually different from RDF reification of statements. However, I 
> think there is potential for confusion "What has all this got to do 
> with reification?" - for me the best fix would be to use a different 
> term in this note.

Yes, there is definitely a terminology clash there. Any suggestions on 
a different term to use?

Received on Wednesday, 5 May 2004 21:28:09 UTC

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