RE: [ALL] Human-friendly syntax for communicating OWL fragments

Just two cents on our experience in teaching OWL and writing about OWL

In our book on "Ontological Engineering" (from Asun Gomez-Perez, Mariano
Fernandez-Lopez, and me) the OWL examples are written in RDF/XML syntax [*],
and people who have read them have been able to understand it, since they
are small bits of code.

The same applies when we have taught about OWL in PhD courses.

Of course, the Abstract Syntax is much less verbose, and I also like it,
especially when I want to communicate something "bigger", but at the same
time, for those cases, we also use UML class diagrams and other graphical


[*] Unfortunately, some of those examples are not valid OWL by now, since
the OWL version we used when we sent the book to print was the one available
in March last year.

> -----Mensaje original-----
> De:
> []En nombre de Jeremy Carroll
> Enviado el: martes, 06 de abril de 2004 14:50
> Para: Uschold, Michael F
> CC: Jim Hendler; Frank van Harmelen;
> Asunto: Re: [ALL] Human-friendly syntax for communicating OWL fragments
> Uschold, Michael F wrote:
> > "there is no reason for the whole world to have read the OWL
> > S&AS document just so they can understand our examples "
> >
> > One way to address this might be to have a short/sweet tutoiral
> on the AS.
> >
> > One way to deal with the syntax shock Tim mentions (and that I
> continue to experience every time I see some), is to assume that
> in general, few folk in the world will be EXPECTED to read raw
> OWL (or RDF) syntax. Exceptions include those who need to be
> concerned about the syntax and parsing of the language. I
> advocate this position, something more readable is needed. If we
> agreed that far, we could begin discussion of what particular
> variant(s) are preferred.
> >
> > Mike
> >
> I don't think so - I tend to agree with Frank that there isn't a single
> answer. It may be helpful to have a tutorial on the abtsract syntax, but
> that won't make the universal answer.
> One of the aspects of the syntax shock is that it is so XML unfriendly,
> making a more friendly XML syntax for RDF I suspect would make it
> even less
> palatable to naive users.
> There is not one 'syntax shock' but many: RDF/XML is a compromise between
> pressures in different directions. OWL AS is more palatable to some
> communities, and less palatable to others.
> Jeremy

Received on Tuesday, 6 April 2004 09:39:28 UTC