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[ontolog-forum] Ontolog Invited Speaker - Professor Alan Rector - Thu 2

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Peter P. Yim" <peter.yim@xxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 20 Aug 2006 20:58:06 -0700
Message-id: <44E92F4E.4000509@xxxxxxxx>
http://ontolog.cim3.net/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?ConferenceCall_2006_09_14    (01)


We are pleased to announce that *Professor Alan Rector* from the 
University of Manchester (United Kingdom) will be presenting to 
the community his talk entitled: "Terminologies and Ontologies: 
What are they for? What would it mean to QA an ontology?"    (03)

We take pleasure in inviting you to join us at this virtual event.    (04)

*Conference call-in details*:    (05)

Date: Thursday, 14-September-2006
Start Time:  17:30 UTC / 6:30pm BST / 1:30pm EDT / 10:30am PDT
   (World Time:
Session Duration: ~2 Hours
Dial-in Number: +1-641-696-6600 (Iowa)
Participant Access Code: "686564#"
Shared-screen support will be available    (06)

Topic: *Terminologies and Ontologies: What are they for*?
        *What would it mean to QA an ontology*?    (07)

*Abstract*: (by Alan Rector)    (08)

Terminologies and 'Ontologies' serve several disparate purposes:    (09)

   o  Providing a controlled vocabulary and/or standard set of 
   o  Providing a means of browsing and finding appropriate 
vocabulary or identifiers
   o  Providing the linguistic terms - synonyms, translations, 
etc.. - to go with the controlled vocabulary
   o  Cross mapping and translation between different systems
   o  Providing logical criteria which can be used for inference 
and query expansion
   o  Providing additional 'universal' or intrinsic information 
about the entities involved
   o  Serving as an index for other background knowledge and 
resources    (010)

Most current biomedical ontologies serve primarily the first 
three functions, with varying efforts towards formal logical 
criteria. However, there are aspirations, and sometimes claims, 
for more rigorous functions, and many standardisation efforts 
pre-suppose more and more formal structure.    (011)

Each of these functions implies criteria for quality assurance. 
For example, for managing controlled vocabularies, process issues 
such as version control and coverage are most critical. Browsing 
raises issues of human computer interaction, and language raises 
its own issues. The last three all require a degree of logical 
coherence and rigour.    (012)

In addition to many biomedical ontologies, scaling is critical. 
Biomedical ontologies are large and potentially combinatorially 
explosive. For some applications, small enumerated terminologies 
are sufficient. For others, indefinitely large compositional 
ontologies that cannot, in principle, be pre-enumerated are required.    (013)

Finally almost all ontologies are based on many poorly 
articulated assumptions. Any quality assurance methodology must 
take account both of what can be understood independent of 
consultation with the originators and what conclusions can be 
reached after consultation with the originators.    (014)

Overall we propose an approach to quality along two dimensions - 
process and content - and a two stage process - the first 
independent of consultation with the originating authority, the 
second in consultation with the originating authority.    (015)

*About the Speaker*:    (016)

*Professor Alan Rector* is Professor of Medical Informatics in 
the School of Computer Science at University of Manchester. He 
currently leads the MRC funded E-Science Projects 
CLEF/CLEF-Services and the JISC/EPSRC jointly funded 
CO-ODE/HyOntUse projects on ontology development tools. His 
research interests are in knowledge representation and 
management, user interface design, and practical support of 
clinical patient care. He has led the MRC/DoH funded PEN&PAD 
programme on user centred design of intelligent clinical 
interfaces, the EC funded GALEN programme a large reference 
ontology for clinical medicine. He is a member of the W3C 
Semantic Web Best Practices Working Group and on HL7, CEN and ISO 
working groups on healthcare terminology. In 2003 he was awarded 
the first BCS Award for Lifetime Achievement in Health 
Informatics. Address: School of Computer Science, University of 
Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL. email: rector-at-cs.man.ac.uk    (017)

*Refer to details on the session wiki page at*:
http://ontolog.cim3.net/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?ConferenceCall_2006_09_14    (018)

This will be a virtual session over an augmented conference call. 
The session is expected to start with a 45 min. ~ 1 Hour 
presentation followed by an extended discussion between the 
participants and the speaker. The entire session will be recorded 
and made available as open content under the prevailing Ontolog 
IPR policy (see: 
http://ontolog.cim3.net/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?WikiHomePage#nid32).    (019)

As usual, this Ontolog event is open to all. I look forward to 
having you at this session. Please pass the announcement along to 
those who might be interested to join us too.    (020)

*RSVP* by by emailing me at <peter.yim@xxxxxxxx> offline.    (021)

Regards. =ppy    (022)

Peter P. Yim
Co-convener, Ontolog
--     (023)

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