ISSUE-182 new draft response

Hi all,

Here's a new draft response to Michael on [ISSUE-182]. Please let me 
know what you think, especialy wrt. formality level!


Dear Michael,

Thank you for your comments [1]:

2. Index terms

An important part of many classification systems is an index, in the
case of the DDC its "Relative Index". Index terms associated with a
given class generally reflect several of the topics falling within the
scope of that class. There is no easy way of modeling this relationship
in SKOS:

616 Diseases

Index terms:
  Clinical medicine
  Internal medicine
  Physical illness--medicine

Currently, a possible workaround is to construct the complete Relative
Index as a separate skos:ConceptScheme and relate the concepts in these
two independent schemes by using mapping relations:

skosclass:hasIndexTerm rdfs:subPropertyOf skos:closeMatch .

skosclass:isIndexTermOf rdfs:subPropertyOf skos:closeMatch ;
 owl:inverseOf skosclass:hasIndexTerm .

<class/616> a skos:Concept ;
 skosclass:hasIndexTerm <index/Clinical%20medicine> ;
 skos:inScheme <classification> .

<index/Clinical%20medicine> a skos:Concept ;
 skosclass:isIndexTermOf <class/616> ;
 skos:inScheme <index> .

This seems to be a satisfactory best-practice solution in this case, but
it has broader implications as index terms are just one instance of
Class-Topic Relations

As a matter of fact SKOS does not offer by default a solution that would 
fit exactly your problem. Our concern with your comment is in fact that 
its scope might be limited, considering the whole context of KOS 
practice. We have indeed not identified that kind of situation in our 
Use Cases and Requirements document [2], even for the classification 
case we had at hand, which was UDC [3].

We consequently propose to *close* ISSUE-182 [ISSUE-182], making no 
change to the existing SKOS documents. We hope that you are able to live 
with this.
We actually would welcome your opinion on this decision, whether you 
think this is really a big shortcoming for the KOS community or not.

Please note that it is still possible to coin a practice for 
representing your "index terms", using properties from SKOS and other 
existing vocabularies.
I indeed faced a similar case once. The motivation for representing 
these indexing links was not clear for us in our case, but using a 
(specialization) of mapping properties, as you proposed, would have 
seemed very statisfactory!
Another option would be to use dc:subject (or a specialization of it), 
based on the observation that indexing of concepts or classes by other 
concepts or classes can be likened to indexing of douments (or general 
resources) by concepts or classes.

I hope this helps. Note that if you agreed with one of the practice 
proposed in the second part of this mail, or come with a better 
solution, we would encourage you to publish a brief best practice note 
and inform the SKOS community via the mailing list. We'd also be more 
than happy to set up a "SKOS community best practices" wiki page to 
collect links to such statements! Note that in your specific case, all 
the elements that you have brought in [1] could be a useful addition to 
the practices presented in [4]...

Best regards,



Received on Wednesday, 22 October 2008 09:29:23 UTC