[Paper:] Logical Interpretations of RDFS - A Compatibility Guide

Dear RDF/RDFS interest email list readers,

those of you who liked our old "Logical Interpretation of RDF" paper and
who want to explore the relation between the old interpretation and the
recent RDF Core WG work (decisions/Model Theory draft) might be
interested in our recent working paper (details see below).

Title: Logical Interpretations of RDFS - A Compatibility Guide

Location: http://nestroy.wi-inf.uni-essen.de/rdf/new_interpretation

Those of you who haven't read the old paper may still profit from the
new one (hopefully). To allow for a more informed download decision, we
include the abstract and a brief structural overview below.

We would be happy about your feedback (rdf@nestroy.wi-inf.uni-essen.de).

Thanks for your kind consideration,
       Wolfram Conen & Reinhold Klapsing

WORKING PAPER:   Logical Interpretations of RDFS - A Compatibility Guide

This paper compares the semantics (or stated more precisely: an
interpretation of the intended semantics) of RDF and RDFS (as previously
captured in [1]) with the semantics defined by the new upcoming RDF
Model Theory [2]. While the RDF Model Theory Draft (MT) relies on set
theory, we interpret the MT utilizing a horn subset of first order
logic. On one hand, this may facilitate comprehensibility, on the other
hand it may lead more directly to verifiable implementations. The
comparison clearly demonstrates the differences between both
interpretations and discusses some consequence of the non-backward
compatible treatment of range/domain properties. It may thus help active
developers to understand the consequences of the changes for existing
RDF schemata and to adapt their RDF/RDFS applications accordingly where


Sec. 1: Outlines the basic terminology (facts+deductive rules+integrity
constraints, Datalog).

Sec. 2: Reviews the horn rules and facts of the old interpretation (of
the RDFS candidate recommendation)

Sec. 3: Gives a new interpretation along the lines of the Model Theory,
again using horn rules (discusses also how some results of the Model
Theory can be proven within the Datalog/LFP framework we used

Sec. 4: Compares the interpretations, points out the differences and
discusses some of the potential problems related to the changes of the
interpretation of range/domain constraints (Developer's beware! ;)


[1] http://nestroy.wi-inf.uni-essen.de/rdf/logical_interpretation/

[2] RDF Model Theory, Editor's Draft as accessed on November 5th, 2001.
A postcript version of the referenced version is available at
(The version has been retrieved from

Received on Thursday, 15 November 2001 10:37:05 UTC