On 1/13/11 9:34 AM, John F. Sowa wrote:
> I was too hasty in sending off the previous note in this thread
> (copy below).
> I overlooked the fact that the SPARQL query had the same variable
> ?x in both the first and third positions: (?x ?p ?x).
> In other words, the author of the query was looking for examples
> that used any symmetric relation. There are many ontologies
> in NCBO BioPortal that are used for important applications. (01)
Query against the LOD Cloud cache we host:
http://lod.openlinksw.com/fct/facet.vsp?cmd=load&fsq_id=191146 . (03)
You can explore the range of classes and properties associated with text
pattern: Ontology :-) (04)
> -------- Original Message --------
> Subject: [ontolog-forum] Interesting observation about OWL ontologies
> Date: Thu, 13 Jan 2011 09:17:49 -0500
> From: John F. Sowa
> At the end of this note is a comment that was sent to a mailing list
> concerning metadata standards by SC32WG2.
> I have previously made the observation that many people who use OWL
> don't use anything that goes beyond Aristotle's syllogisms. I cited
> the BFO ontology as an example, but I had never done a thorough
> analysis of any large collection of OWL ontologies.
> But the following observation shows that of the 202 registered
> ontologies in the NCBO BioPortal, the *only* relation used in
> their triples is rdfs:subClassOf -- i.e., those "ontologies"
> are just trivial hierarchies of undefined terms.
> This leads to several observations:
> 1. Many so-called ontologies written in OWL are nothing more than
> lists of terms organized in a simple hierarchy -- i.e., they
> should be called *terminologies* rather than ontologies.
> 2. The people who have been writing those ontologies never saw any
> use for any of the formal methods supported by OWL for defining
> terms and reasoning about them.
> 3. They were probably pushed into using OWL by some higher level
> executives who were sold on OWL by hype encoded in glossy slides
> with no supporting evidence.
> 4. But the resulting so-called ontologies *cannot* be used for any
> kind of reasoning that goes beyond what could have been done
> with the original terminologies written in ordinary English.
> And by the way, I realize that there are useful applications of OWL
> when implemented by people who know what they're doing. But large
> numbers of people who have no idea what they should be doing have
> been pushed into using a technology they don't understand.
> As a result, huge amounts of time, money, and the expertise of
> highly-paid professionals have been flushed down the drain for
> no useful purpose.
> John Sowa
> --- Additional Comments From kdkeck@xxxxxxx 2011-01-12 11:49 ET ---
> I've used SPARQL to query the NCBO BioPortal for any statements
> of the form (?x ?p ?x). The only statements of that form found,
> out of 202 registered ontologies, had p=rdfs:subClassOf. Such
> assertions are strictly redundant--ALL classes are subclasses
> of themselves, by definition.
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