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Re: purpose/goals for observations ontologies

From: John Graybeal <graybeal@mbari.org>
Date: Tue, 11 Aug 2009 22:54:54 -0600
Cc: <Laurent.Lefort@csiro.au>, <public-xg-ssn@w3.org>
Message-Id: <45721C8F-455C-4752-982E-6CD7DADA88CF@mbari.org>
To: Simon Cox <simon.cox@jrc.ec.europa.eu>
I believe I have seen in many places that if you want your ontology to  
be re-used, it is best that it be "modular", which I understood to  
mean self-contained.  If it has many references to the rest of the  
web, then its complexity is higher, and its likely usability becomes  
lower (because somewhere in those references will be a statement that  
conflicts with statements in the user's world -- whether or not they  
"need" to use those statements).

If my (admittedly naive) understanding is correct, this is essentially  
a case of conflicting design architectures -- one has lots of little  
atomic plug-in pieces, and another has deep and rich connections to  
components with sophisticated capabilities or relationships. Both have  
value, but for most applied uses I would suspect the former  
architecture is easier to reuse.

I welcome enlightenment.


On Aug 10, 2009, at 5:54 AM, Simon Cox wrote:

> What I find curious about this discussion, in the context of the  
> 'semantic
> web', is that O&M and HollowWorld are quite honest about the  
> dependencies on
> external resources.
> Inevitably, this can lead to a rather large graph, if you chase them  
> all
> down.
> But the point of the 'web' is deferred resolution of references, so  
> you only
> need look at a sub-graph at any one time, with interface classes/ 
> resources
> represented as URIs.
> OTOH many of the ontologies I see coming out of the semantic web  
> community
> have 'self-contained' as part of their design criteria.
> This seems to miss out on the 'web' part of 'semantic web'.

John Graybeal   <mailto:jbgraybeal@mindspring.com>
Marine Metadata Interoperability Project: http://marinemetadata.org
Received on Wednesday, 12 August 2009 04:55:49 UTC

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