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[ontolog-forum] Mapping Tools (was" master data vs. ontologies")

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Burkett, William [USA]" <burkett_william@xxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2015 16:50:16 +0000
Message-id: <5F3838054D67CB46BF72095D4AF65FA59F636E5C@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
:-)  Once again, the simpler the question, the greater the volume of responses! 
: :-)    (01)

I wanted to chime on the subject of mapping tools that was raised, as I think 
this is a critical subject and one that receives far far too little attention 
(it is literally the "missing link" as far as  interoperability solutions go.)    (02)

>> RS
>> Do any mapping tools exist? I have only seen associative or parallel 
>semantic method (manual)
> of looking at Terms and mapping to Entities in OWL- RDF use case and with DB 
>> Many kinds of mapping tools have been developed.  Logic programming 
>> languages such as Prolog are an example.  UML diagrams can be and have 
>> been mapped to logic, and there are tools for using UML diagrams (and 
>> many similar notations) to generate some or all of a computable 
>> specification.
>Mapping tools are hard and IMO there are no good ones, and UML is certainly 
>not one. The problem is probably down to the fact that mapping is hard and 
>there are >often cases where something in one model really can't be 
>represented in another and yet people are forced to try.    (03)

These responses confuse me a bit, as I can't grasp how "prolog" is an example 
of a "mapping tool".    "Mapping", to me, and as I think is intended here, is 
"data mapping": the specification of how data formatted/structure in accordance 
with one model can be transformed into data formatted/structured with a 
different model.  (Or, more weakly, how one model is related to another.)  
David's last sentence alludes to the fact that something captured/represented 
in one model might not exist at all in the second model, making mapping a 
challenge.    (04)

*I*F this is what is intended by "mapping tools", there are several out there:    (05)

(1) Liaison's Contivo mapping tool (I've had experience with this - the 
learning curve is steep, but it's pretty good at what it does)
(2) Altova's MapForce (No experience with this, but it looks like Contivo)
(3) and I believe IBM has a product/tool in this category - sorry - can't 
remember the name.    (06)

Wrt ontologies, a mapping would be specified between the "types" or "classes" 
in the ontology and transformations would be executed on the "instances" in the 
ontology.  (And for those thinking about constructs like owl:SameAs for 
mapping, I'm afraid they are far too weak to be used for data transformation.)    (07)

And wrt the original subject of "master data vs. ontologies"), I give my vote 
to David Price's original explanation of the distinction - I think it was the 
most practical and accurate.    (08)

Bill     (09)

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