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[ontolog-forum] FW: [ONTOLOGY-LIST] Building a National Semantic Web Ont

To: <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Obrst, Leo J." <lobrst@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 20 Feb 2008 17:55:29 -0500
Message-id: <9F771CF826DE9A42B548A08D90EDEA8002D01064@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

From: Obrst, Leo J. [mailto:lobrst@xxxxxxxxx]
Sent: Wednesday, February 20, 2008 5:52 PM
To: ontology-list Ontology, Semantics, Knowledge Representation
Subject: [ONTOLOGY-LIST] Building a National Semantic Web Ontology and Ontology Service Infrastructure: -The FinnONTO Approach

Here is one of the most interesting and ambitious Semantic Web projects I've come across: FinnONTO. This is an attempt to have an integrated Semantic Web ontology infrastructure across all industries and companies in Finland. 

Building a National Semantic Web Ontology and

Ontology Service Infrastructure

?The FinnONTO Approach

Eero Hyv¨onen, Kim Viljanen, Jouni Tuominen, Katri Sepp¨al¨a




This article presents the vision and results of creating a national

level cross-domain ontology service infrastructure in Finland in the

FinnONTO project. The novelty of the infrastructure is based on two

ideas. First, a system of open source core ontologies is being developed

by transforming thesauri into mutually aligned lightweight ontologies,

including a top ontology of 20,000 concepts that is extended by various

domain specific ontologies. Second, the ONKI Ontology Server framework

for publishing ontologies as ready to use services has been designed

and implemented. ONKI provides legacy and other applications with

ready to use functionalities for using ontologies on the user interface

level as semantic widgets. The idea is to use ONKI for creating mash-up

applications in a way analogous to using Google or Yahoo Maps, but

in our case external applications are mashed-up with ontology support.

The ontology framework presented is operational on the web and is being

used in creating the application demonstrations.


Here is the main FinnONTO page: http://www.seco.tkk.fi/projects/finnonto/.


The ambitious goal of FinnONTO is to lay a foundation for a national metadata, ontology, and ontology service framework in Finland, and demonstrate its usefulness in practical applications. In our vision, a conceptual semantic infrastructure is needed for the semantic web in the same way as roads are needed for traffic and transportation, power plants and electrical networks are needed for energy supply, or GSM standards and networks are needed for mobile phones and wireless communication. A solid, commonly agreed open infrastructure would make it much easier and cheaper for public organizations and companies to create interoperable, intelligent services on the coming semantic web. The infrastructure should be open source and its central components be maintained by the public sector order to guarantee wide usage and interoperability across different application domains and users.

The consortium behind the project included 37 public organizations and companies funding the research during the final year 2007. This consortium represents a wide area of functions of the society including museums, libraries, business, health organizations, government, media, and education. Public organizations, companies, and universities are participating in the project.


Here is an additional paper on that page:


An overview of this national level project and its results is presented in the invited paper of the First International Conference on Semantic Computing (IEEE ICSC 2007), Irvine, California, 2007: E. Hyvönen et al.: Elements of a National Semantic Web Infrastructure - Case Finland on the Semantic Web.

Dr. Leo Obrst       The MITRE Corporation, Information Semantics
lobrst@xxxxxxxxx    Information Discovery & Understanding, Command and Control Center
Voice: 703-983-6770 7515 Colshire Drive, M/S H305
Fax: 703-983-1379   McLean, VA 22102-7508, USA

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