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Re: [ontolog-forum] A "common basis"

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 03 May 2007 19:08:55 -0400
Message-id: <463A6B87.2020002@xxxxxxxxxxx>
I would like to make a suggestion about the question of
common vs. federated approaches to sharing ontologies.    (01)

Unless we have a detailed specification of what features
would be in either a common approach or a federated approach,
we have no clear basis for comparison.  Therefore, I'll begin
with some suggestions for what I'd like to see:    (02)

  1. A repository, based on the ISO Metadata Registry standards,
     for organizing and making available ontologies, large and
     small, their pieces, components, or modules, and all the
     info about who, what, when, where, how, and why.    (03)

  2. Translators for logic-based languages, at least Common Logic
     and the W3C standards, but also any others that anyone might
     wish to contribute.    (04)

  3. Tools for aligning ontologies and modules of ontologies.    (05)

  4. Collections of all the ontologies and modules anyone might want
     to contribute, either for free or for whatever fee the developer
     wishes to charge.  SUMO, OpenCyc, DOLCE, BFO, and any others
     would all be included.    (06)

  5. Etc. (open invitation for anyone to add their "druthers").    (07)

This approach is necessary for a federated approach and it would be
extremely useful for the current state where multiple groups are
proposing competing (or cooperating) ontologies.    (08)

Instead of debating which approach is better, I suggest that we
start designing something along the lines above and let users
"vote with their feet" for whichever collection(s) of resources
they find most useful.    (09)

John Sowa    (010)

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