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Re: Best Practice for Renaming OWL Vocabulary Elements

From: Martin Hepp <martin.hepp@ebusiness-unibw.org>
Date: Fri, 22 Apr 2011 22:58:32 +0200
Cc: "semantic-web@w3.org" <semantic-web@w3.org>, "public-lod@w3.org" <public-lod@w3.org>
Message-Id: <9800C94A-3DBA-4156-BE09-A819D36D4976@ebusiness-unibw.org>
To: Alan Ruttenberg <alanruttenberg@gmail.com>
Hi Alan:
Thanks for the suggestion. However, I am convinced that numerical IDs are not suited for ontologies that will mostly be used in RDFa syntax.
Also, changing a majority of identifiers of an already established vocabulary would mean throwing away all of the existing momentum. There may be technical gains, but in terms of network economics, this would be suicide.
That is no option in my case and also not needed. 

To keep things in perspective: GoodRelations is deployed and stable. I am only trying to shorten the identifier of two conceptual elements already in moderate use, because I think that the increased ease for writing markup and queries will be much bigger than the loss in terms of broken legacy systems or data. 

On the more theoretical side, I do not thing that English identifiers are necessarily a barrier to global adoption. HTML is based in English identifiers, most XML schemas are based on English identifiers, the HTTP protocol uses English tokens, etc. ;-)

Martin

On Apr 22, 2011, at 8:14 PM, Alan Ruttenberg wrote:

> Dear Martin,
> 
> My advise is to bite the bullet now and once and change all the URIs to use numerical ids, ridding them of any domain content. 
> 
> If you have the desire now to change a string you will have it again. Get rid of the issue now and forever while the semantic web is young. 
> 
> Aside from the issue you are facing, in my opinion choosing any particular language (English in this case) in a privileged position in the URI will be a barrier, perhaps subtle, to global adoption. 
> 
> The OBO Foundry policy is at http://obofoundry.org/id-policy.shtml  the in case it might be useful. You will see we decided to bite the bullet (because of another bad design choice) and how we are documenting it. 
> 
> -Alan
> 
> On Apr 21, 2011, at 5:46 AM, Martin Hepp <martin.hepp@ebusiness-unibw.org> wrote:
> 
>> Dear all:
>> 
>> I am considering to rename a few conceptual elements in the GoodRelations ontology. However, they are already in use in data, queries, and applications. Thus, I am thinking of the least intrusive way of implementing this. I think this question is also relevant for many other OWL vocabularies on the Web.
>> 
>> Attached, please find my proposal. It critically depends on the ability of typical triple-stores to compute basic(*) inferences for
>> 
>> - owl:equivalentProperty for owl:DatatypeProperty and owl:ObjectProperty entities,
>> - owl:equivalentClass for pairs of owl:Class and
>> - owl:sameAs for pairs of "ontological" instances, e.g. value nodes defined in the vocabulary.
>> 
>> With "basic", I mean that additional triples for the additional class membership or property or instance must be materialized; this could be a subset of the complete theoretical implications.
>> As far as I know, Virtuoso does support this to a sufficient degree, but I am unsure about other parts of widely deployed infrastructure.
>> 
>> It would be no problem to express the necessary inferences by means of a SPARQL CONSTRUCT rule or in SPIN.
>> 
>> Please share any suggestions and concerns with me.
>> 
>> Old, but in use:
>> ---------------
>> foo:LongClassName a owl:Class ;
>>   rdfs:label "LongClassName" .
>> 
>> foo:LongPropertyName1 a owl:DatatypeProperty ;
>>   rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
>>   rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1" .
>> 
>> foo:LongPropertyName2 a owl:ObjectProperty ;
>>   rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
>>   rdfs:range foo:SomeOtherClass1 ;    
>>   rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1" .
>> 
>> foo:LongNameIndividual a foo:SomeOtherClass2 ;
>>   rdfs:label "LongNameIndividual" .
>> 
>> Now, we want to rename those elements as follows, without breaking old data nor old queries / applications:
>> 
>> foo:LongClassName --> foo:NewClassName
>> foo:LongPropertyName1 --> foo:NewPropertyName1
>> foo:LongPropertyName2 --> foo:NewPropertyName2
>> foo:LongNameIndividual --> foo:NewNameIndividual
>> 
>> Proposal:
>> --------
>> a) Step 1: Define new classes, properties, individuals and link back to their old variants
>> 
>> foo:NewClassName a owl:Class ;
>>   owl:equivalentClass foo:LongClassName .
>>   rdfs:label "NewClassName (Note: This was foo:LongClassName previously)" .
>> 
>> foo:NewPropertyName1 a owl:DatatypeProperty ;
>>   owl:equivalentProperty foo:LongPropertyName1 ;
>>   rdfs:domain foo:NewClassName ;
>>   rdfs:label "NewPropertyName1 (Note: This was foo:LongPropertyName1 previously)" .
>> 
>> foo:NewPropertyName2 a owl:ObjectProperty ;
>>   owl:equivalentProperty foo:LongPropertyName2 ;
>>   rdfs:domain foo:NewClassName ;
>>   rdfs:range foo:SomeOtherClass1 ;    
>>   rdfs:label "NewPropertyName2 (Note: This was foo:LongPropertyName2 previously)" .
>> 
>> foo:NewNameIndividual a foo:SomeOtherClass2 ;
>>   owl:sameAs foo:LongNameIndividual ;
>>   rdfs:label "NewNameIndividual (Note: This was foo:LongNameIndividual previously)" .
>> 
>> b) Step 2: Deprecate the old elements in OWL 2 style (using owl:deprecated)
>> foo:LongClassName a owl:Class;
>>   owl:deprecated true;
>>   rdfs:label "LongClassName - Deprecated, use foo:NewClassName instead" .
>> 
>> foo:LongPropertyName1 a owl:DatatypeProperty ;
>>   owl:deprecated true;
>>   rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
>>   rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1 - Deprecated, use foo:NewPropertyName1 instead" .
>> 
>> foo:LongPropertyName2 a owl:ObjectProperty ;
>>   owl:deprecated true ;
>>   rdfs:domain foo:LongClassName ;
>>   rdfs:range foo:SomeOtherClass1 ;    
>>   rdfs:label "LongPropertyName1 - Deprecated, use foo:NewPropertyName2 instead" .
>> 
>> foo:LongNameIndividual a foo:SomeOtherClass2 ;
>>   owl:deprecated true ;
>>   rdfs:label "LongNameIndividual - Deprecated, use foo:NewNameIndividual instead" .
>> 
>> c) Since the owl:deprecated property is not defined in OWL1, I would also add the following axiom in order to remain within OWL 1 DL:
>> #OWL 1 DL compatibility of the OWL2 deprecated property
>> owl:deprecated a owl:AnnotationProperty.
>> 
>> Thanks in advance!
>> 
>> Best
>> 
>> Martin
>> 
>> --------------------------------------------------------
>> martin hepp
>> e-business & web science research group
>> universitaet der bundeswehr muenchen
>> 
>> e-mail:  hepp@ebusiness-unibw.org
>> phone:   +49-(0)89-6004-4217
>> fax:     +49-(0)89-6004-4620
>> www:     http://www.unibw.de/ebusiness/ (group)
>>        http://www.heppnetz.de/ (personal)
>> skype:   mfhepp 
>> twitter: mfhepp
>> 
>> 
>> 
> 
Received on Friday, 22 April 2011 21:00:53 GMT

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