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RE: scope notes and definitions

From: Aida <aida@acorweb.net>
Date: Thu, 27 Jan 2005 15:17:23 -0000
To: "Miles, AJ \(Alistair\)" <A.J.Miles@rl.ac.uk>
Cc: <public-esw-thes@w3.org>


Related to scope note and definitions. I agree with Stella because
KOS use both in parallel and SN and definition are not mutually exclusive
and there is no real reason to condition their use...

I would also like to comment on the following sentence in the Guide:

"SKOS Core is also proposed as a standard framework for creating RDF
descriptions of the more linguistically
oriented types of knowledge organisation system, such as thesauri, subject
heading schemes, terminologies,
glossaries, classifications schemes, other controlled vocabulary types etc."

[Minor point: I don't think classifications should be mentioned here as they
are not 'linguistically' orientated scheme, and
I don't know any 'other' controlled vocabulary type other than taxonomies
which are again not linguistically orientated]

More importantly - I think that presenting SKOS in the manner above is
misleading and may give impression that
SKOS is created on the ground common to all KOS - which is simply not the
case. As far as I am aware SKOS is created
around thesaurus structure and it would be better to say something as "SKOS
core is best suited to be used for thesaurus"...
and let people know that if they want to 'force' it to work with other
alphabetical indexing languages or
even classification schemes - this may not be so straightforward.

The reason for this is very simple. For instance if one looks into existing
MARC formats for classification
authority data or any database holding classification you will find the
following simple set of data elements that is
common to all general and special classification systems used in document

- notation  (symbol: numeric or alphanumeric representation of
- caption/description  (uncontrolled verbal description of the
-scope note
- application note/instruction (conditions of use of the class/concept)
-index term  (controlled terms/descriptors - used to search classification,
these may be in the form of thesaurus)

[NB semantic relationships (hierarchical and associative) are the same in
thesaurus and classification
so this is not the problem]

If one looks into SKOS Core - it is not immediately clear (at least not to
how even this simple set of common classification data elements can be
accommodated within SKOS Core.
I was even wondering should I, for instance, use definition instead of

Even in the area of 'notes', which seems to be rather generous, there is no
note that can accommodate
application/instruction notes and links they contain. These may contain the
following kind of instructions:
- use this concept/class to specify XY
- further specify this concept/class using XY
- do not use this concept/class for XY
- if .... then use XY
[each XY here is link to some other class/concept in the system]

So my suggestion would be, depending on what is the purpose of SKOS, that
the mention of any other KOS
apart from thesaurus is avoided or put in followed some kind of explanation
Or alternatively that the guide provide some kind of "mapping schema" [I
can't think of any better expression at the mo]
or at least examples how differently structured KOS are envisaged to be
encoded within SKOS Core which is
at present thesaurus orientated.

Received on Thursday, 27 January 2005 15:18:12 UTC

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