diagram IS an ontology (symbols standing in relation to one another that make a
number of sentences). What's more I don't need a computer (or understand FOL)
to tell me what it means.
Why not build an ontology?
On Mar 3, 2006, at 7:46 AM, Dagobert Soergel wrote:
This is a good way to do the total map. We
need a reference list of all the elements of all upper ontologies to label
the rows. The columns then would have symbols for "includes exact",
"includes variant", "includes broader", may be more, and a link to a
location with more explanation how this element is treated in this
At 3/3/2006 05:08 AM, you wrote:
Longer ago than
I care to remember I developed a map of a number of different data models
developed in different parts of Shell, trying to show where they were
similar and where they differed. I attach a pdf of the slide that captured
this "map" and commend the approach of a simple matrix like this to give a
high level map of where the different ontologies are similar or
- -----Original Message-----
- From: uos-convene-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
mailto:uos-convene-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]On Behalf Of Dagobert
- Sent: 03 March 2006 03:00
- To: uos-convene@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Subject: [uos-convene] Suggestions for
structuring the Tu Mar 14 meeting
- This is a composite of two messages I sent earlier and some thoughts
that transpired in the uos-convene phone conference on March 2.
- Purpose: To create a map of the upper ontology landscape at
- Broad descriptions of each upper ontology, indicating special
domains (such as time) included / excluded, level of detail, level of
formalization, and philosophical basis / rationale.
- Broad comparison, arranged in at least two ways: pair-wise
comparisons of the ontologies and an outline of issues / constructs with
an overview how each is treated in the different ontologies
- Detailed mapping that compares at the entity and relationship
level. Again, this could be done pair-wise, giving for each entity
and relationship of ontology A the closest corresponding entity or
relationship from ontology B, explaining agreement and disagreement as
appropriate. And this should be represented in the alternative
organization of taking each entity and each relationship, such as
partOf, and racing its treatment in all covered ontologies, pointing out
agreements and disagreements.
- This map could be used to find a common subset, to select an upper
ontology for a given purpose, and for creating a "mix and match" upper
ontology by taking pieces from several upper ontologies, providing these
pieces fit together (which should be decidable based on the map).
(This is the idea of metadata profiles in XML applied to upper
ontologies or ontologies in general.)
- A general method to arrive at such a map is as follows:
- 1 Collect
suggested upper ontologies - this is done by inviting the
"custodians". Might include ontologies that deal not with all
things but with often-used aspects, such as an ontology of time concepts
or space or general process description.
- 2 Compare
and determine differences
(presence / absence and, more difficult, definition)
- 3 Try to
resolve differences, creating a superstructure that incorporates
non-contradictory parts of various schemes
- 4 Articulate
the remaining differences so that they are clearly understood.
- Some issues that arise in such an effort are listed below (there are
surely more). These issues should be discussed at the Tuesday
meeting with the objective of either finding a tentative solution or
outlining a way for finding a solution. Put differently, the
meeting should start to hammer out a statement on the difficulties of
making these ontologies interoperable and the methods by which they can
be made more interoperable. This would include the determination
- areas where there is no or little overlap with one ontology with any
of the others,
- areas where there may be agreement that one of the ontologies is
- areas where the custodians may be willing to adapt,
- areas where people have strongly held different positions
- Then issues of process
- How does one go about resolving differences?
- Can one agree on a common formal language (or on a common language
for more informal description) to describe the differences that cannot
be resolved so at least users of the ontologies know what the
- What are next steps? Can two of the custodians start a pilot
project of reconciling some parts of their ontologies?
- How much effort is involved?
- There may be more points to be considered. Perhaps we could
get some statements on these points before the meeting.
- Dagobert Soergel
- College of Information Studies
- University of Maryland
- 4105 Hornbake Library
- College Park, MD 20742-4345
- Office: 301-405-2037 Home:
Shared Files: http://ontolog.cim3.net/file/work/UpperOntologySummit/uos-convene/
College of Information Studies
4105 Hornbake Library
College Park, MD 20742-4345
301-314-9145 HFax: 703-823-6427