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Re: Taking advantage of OWL's standardization on a relationship vocabulary - need an OWL API?

From: J. Liu <jingdong.liu@sympatico.ca>
Date: Thu, 24 Apr 2003 16:20:49 -0400
Message-ID: <00c901c30a9f$19a70580$0de5fea9@DCR8PM11>
To: "Roger L. Costello" <costello@mitre.org>, <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>
Cc: "Costello,Roger L." <costello@mitre.org>

If OWL is being used as yet another language to describe the information,
I'll doubt its value since we are not lack of that kind languages. The word
"API" struck me a bit in that API is a term used in traditional software
world for information processing. In the knowledge engineering world, I like
to see OWL is used to carry both information and reasoning. Therefore, what
we need is really an engine to conduct the reasoning based on the knowledge
carried by the OWL.

Patrick J. Liu

----- Original Message -----
From: "Roger L. Costello" <costello@mitre.org>
To: <www-rdf-interest@w3.org>
Cc: "Costello,Roger L." <costello@mitre.org>
Sent: Thursday, April 24, 2003 9:24 AM
Subject: Taking advantage of OWL's standardization on a relationship
vocabulary - need an OWL API?

> Hi Folks,
> My idea of what OWL is and what are its benefits continues to evolve.
> Here's my current thinking:
> OWL provides an XML vocabulary for defining terms and their
> relationships.  That is, it provides a *standard* set of elements and
> attributes, with *defined semantics*, for defining terms and their
> relationships.[1]
> No question, this is a huge step forward.  XML was the first step.  This
> is the second step.
> What I see as lacking is: "how does an application utilize a document
> which has been written using the OWL XML vocabulary?"
> Consider the Camera OWL Ontology.  It is a document that uses the OWL
> XML vocabulary (subClassOf, equivalentProperty, etc) to define terms
> (SLR, Camera, etc) and their relationships (SLR is a subClassOf Camera,
> etc).  How does an application utilize this information?
> Let's take an example.  Suppose my application is processing an XML
> instance document that contains <SLR>...</SLR>.  Further, suppose that
> my application is searching for Camera information.  Thus, my
> application would like to know the relationship between SLR and Camera.
> That relationship information is in the Camera Ontology, but how does my
> application find it?
> One solution is for my application to parse through the Camera Ontology,
> looking for SLR, and any relationship it has to Camera.  If every
> application has to write this parsing code then there will be a lot of
> rundandant effort.
> Another solution is to provide a standard OWL API.  The API has all the
> parsing smarts in it. Thus, this parsing code isn't written over and
> over.
> An example method in an OWL API might be:
>     isRelatedBy(term1URI, term2URI)
>       possible return values:
>           ---> "subClassOf"
>           ---> "equivalentProperty"
>           ---> "sameIndividualAs"
>           etc
> The bottom line is this:
> 1. I know how to define terms and their relationships using the standard
> OWL XML vocabulary.
> 2. I know how to create XML instance documents that employ the terms
> defined in 1.
> 3. It is not clear to me how to utilize 1 in processing 2.
> 4. Is a standard OWL API useful?
> 5. What other approaches are there to programmatically harvesting
> information from an OWL document?
> 6. What do you think?
> /Roger
> [1] Note: RDF Schema is, of course, part of this discussion.
Received on Thursday, 24 April 2003 16:21:33 UTC

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