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ISSUE-184 new draft response

From: Antoine Isaac <aisaac@few.vu.nl>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2008 21:34:36 +0100
Message-ID: <490A1A5C.3030004@few.vu.nl>
To: SWD WG <public-swd-wg@w3.org>

Hi all,

Here's a draft response to Michael on [ISSUE-184], let me know what you 
think. Note *this is just a draft, not the actual response* -- I'll wait 
for feedback from the WG before replying formally to
to Michael. (Michael: if you're lurking on this list feel free to post 
your thoughts at any time.)


Dear Michael,

Thank you for your comments [1]:

4. skos:notation and skos:prefLabel are overlapping

There are two issues here: 1, Most notation in classification schemes is
preferred (i.e., standard) notation. Should both skos:notation and
skos:prefLabel be used for all these cases?

2, On some occasions an alternative (i.e., optional) notation is given
for a concept. For example, inScheme CCT:
       [Q89] environmental biology
           Preferred class: X17

Regardless whether it is preferred or alternative, the notation always
represents a unique concept and therefore has semantic relationships.
Hence, an alternative notation is not a non-preferred thesaurus label,
which has only lexical relationships.


Regarding your first comment, we would like to emphasize that you are 
free to use both skos:notation and the "private language tag" solutions 
and as you see fit. In particular, you can use them both at the same 
time. But you can also use only one of them, for instance if you do not 
want to coin a datatype of your own to be used with skos:notation. 
Assuming that the "preferred" aspect of a notation is what you really 
want to emphasize on, you can thus use skos:prefLabel only or 
skos:prefLabel and skos:notation, as you propose.

Regarding the second aspect of your comment, let me quote the SKOS Primer:

> it is possible to use one SKOS labelling property, for instance 
> |skos:prefLabel|, in combination with private use language (sub-)tags

The "for instance" is crucial here. Nothing prevents to use 
skos:altLabel in combination with private use tags to express that a 
notation has an "alternative" flavour. Further, in SKOS the semantic 
relationships are attached to concepts and not to their lexicalizations, 
whether preferred or alternative. There is therefore no essential 
difference between representing a notation as an alternative label or a 
as a preferred label: all semantic relations will be attached to the 
concept this notation labels. Your Q89/X17 example could be represented as
ex:x17 rdf:type skos:Concept ;
          skos:broader ex:x1 ;
          skos:prefLabel "environmental biology"@en ;
          skos:prefLabel "x17"@x-notation-mynotation ;
          skos:altLabel "q85"@x-notation-mynotation ;
(assuming that your "X17" has "X1" as a parent class)

I hope these answers address your concerns appropropriately. As we 
believe that the current SKOS model currently statisfies the 
requirements you mentioned, we propose to *close* ISSUE-184 [ISSUE-184], 
making no change to the existing SKOS documents. We hope that you are 
able to live with this.

Note that if you agreed with one of the practice proposed in the first 
part of this mail, or come with alternative solutions, we would 
encourage you to publish a brief best practice note and inform the SKOS 
community via the mailing list. We'd also be more than happy to set up a 
"SKOS community best practices" wiki page to collect links to such 
statements! Note that in your specific case, all the elements that you 
have brought in [1] could be a useful addition to the practices 
presented in [2]...

Best regards,


[ISSUE-184] http://www.w3.org/2006/07/SWD/track/issues/181
[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-swd-wg/2008Oct/0061.html
[2] http://esw.w3.org/topic/SkosDev/ClassificationPubGuide?rev=12
Received on Thursday, 30 October 2008 23:28:20 UTC

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