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RE: What is it that's wrong with rdf:List [summary]

From: Michael Schneider <schneid@fzi.de>
Date: Mon, 21 Jun 2010 12:31:42 +0200
Message-ID: <0EF30CAA69519C4CB91D01481AEA06A001E9A6B8@judith.fzi.de>
To: "Norman Gray" <norman@astro.gla.ac.uk>
Cc: "Semantic Web" <semantic-web@w3.org>
Norman Gray wrote:

>So is rdf:List any different from the other parts of RDF(S) excluded
>from OWL-DL/Lite <http://www.w3.org/TR/owl-semantics/mapping.html#4.2>?
>I can see that other elements of that excluded list are problematic for
>reasoning because in RDF(S) they have domains or members which are
>largely unrestricted, which could clearly complicate reasoning about
>them.  It sounds (to me, possibly naively) that rdf:List is included in
>that list for rather more technical reasons, and that this may account
>for the slight air of aggrievedness (is that too strong?) which hangs
>around it.

Here is my estimation:

AFAIR, the OWL Working Group *postponed* the issue to allow RDF lists in OWL
2 DL (see [1]), since it did not know how to handle RDF lists in the reverse
OWL 2 Mapping to RDF Graphs [2]. 

I guess, if someone would take that job on himself to analyze the RDF
mapping and finds out how to extend it to (more or less) general list usage
without breaking the mapping and without making it considerably more
complicated, then there would be a chance to get RDF lists into OWL DL in a
future version. At least, tool builders would then have a solid foundation
to extend their OWL DL tools to cope with RDF lists in OWL DL ontologies in
RDF graph form. And, having several tools with mature RDF list support would
be an even better reason for a future OWL working group to reconsider the
decision being made for OWL 2 DL.

In any case, RDF lists would have no impact on OWL DL reasoning. They do not
have any semantic meaning in OWL DL, and they can be fully reconstructed,
anyway, only by using a different namespace for the different URIs (e.g.
"ex:List", "ex:first", "ex:rest", "ex:nil").


[1] <http://www.w3.org/2007/OWL/tracker/issues/129>
[2] <http://www.w3.org/TR/2009/REC-owl2-mapping-to-rdf-20091027/>

Dipl.-Inform. Michael Schneider
Research Scientist, Information Process Engineering (IPE)
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Received on Monday, 21 June 2010 10:32:18 UTC

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