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Joint OOR-Ontolog Panel Discussion Session - Thu 04-Dec-2008     (1)

  • Subject: Ontology Registry and Repository Technology & Infrastructure Landscape - II     (1A)

  • Shared-screen support (VNC session), if applicable, will be started 5 minutes before the call at:     (1E5)
    • view-only password: "ontolog"     (1E5A)
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Attendees     (1G)

Background     (1H)

Two parallel initiatives were started in the ontology community in 2008 that revolved around the theme of "Open Ontology Repository." On the one hand, an ongoing working group under the auspices of the OpenOntologyRepository Initiative, and on the other, the discourse (and essentially a virtual discussion that culminated in a two-day workshop) conducted as the main focus for Ontology Summit 2008 (which took place back in Jan~Apr. 2008.)     (1H1)

While the OpenOntologyRepository working group continues to focus on implementation activities, it is recognized that there is a need for continued dialog, discourse, exchange of ideas and collaboration. It is with the latter in mind, that this Joint OOR-Ontolog Panel Series is conceived. Ken Baclawski, Paul Buitelaar, Mike Dean, Michelle Raymond and Peter P. Yim have stepped up to the plate to co-champion this series of virtual panel discussions and related activities. We hope this will provide a platform for sharing ideas among colleagues who are working on related projects, threshing out research and development issues, and exploring opportunities for collaboration and synergy.     (1H2)

Agenda & Proceedings     (1I)

  • This is the first of the joint OOR-Ontolog panel series which follows the pattern of the very successful panel discussion sessions we had in the Spring of 2008. Again, We are attempting to bring together some of the world's top experts who have done pertinent work in this area to participate in this panel discussion sessions. Besides hearing from the panelists, we are setting aside ample time (~30 minutes) after their briefings, for some good Q&A and discussions among all who will be participating in this sessions.     (1I1)
  • Session Format: this is a virtual session conducted over an augmented conference call.     (1I2)

Topic: Ontology Registry and Repository Technology & Infrastructure Landscape - II     (1J)

Abstract:     (1J1)

Our first panel session surveying the Ontology Registry and Repository Technology & Infrastructure Landscape took place at ConferenceCall_2008_02_28.     (1J2)

This session (ConferenceCall_2008_12_04) continues that pursuit and presents more of the state of the art in ontology repositories. Those work are represented here by Mathieu d'Aquin of the Knowledge Media Institute in the UK ( on the Watson semantic web search engine (, by Matthew Horridge of Manchester University in the UK ( on the TONES Ontology Repository ( and by Paul Buitelaar of DFKI in Germany ( on the OntoSelect ontology library (     (1J3)

Panelists' Presentation Titles and Abstracts:     (1J4)

. Watson: A Semantic Web Gateway, and Towards a Decentralized Ontology Repository - Mathieu d'Aquin     (1J5)

Watson ( is an online, open system acting like a Semantic Web search engine: it crawls the Web to find ontologies and document encoding information using Semantic Web languages, indexes this information and makes it available through sophisticated search and querying mechanisms. However, more than a simple interface for keyword search, Watson is a Gateway to the Semantic Web, as it provides high level, efficient and robust services for developers to build applications dynamically finding, selecting and exploiting Semantic Web ontologies. In this presentation, I will report on our experience in developing the Watson gateway, as well as in interacting with application developers in need for such an infrastructure to make use of the growing Semantic Web. Looking into the future, I will also discuss how we are moving from Watson as a centralized access point to the Semantic Web, towards a distributed system to which users can contribute with their own ontologies, creating personal, online ��ontology spaces�� for others to discuss, and more importantly, to reuse.     (1J5A)

. The TONES Ontology Repository - MatthewHorridge     (1J6)

This talk will present the TONES ontology repository. The motivation for the repository will be discussed and the main features of the repository will be presented.     (1J6A)

. OntoSelect: A Browser and Search Engine for Ontologies - PaulBuitelaar     (1J7)

OntoSelect is a dynamic web-based ontology library that harvests, analyzes and organizes ontologies published on the Semantic Web. OntoSelect allows searching as well as browsing of ontologies according to size (number of classes, properties), representation format (DAML, RDFS, OWL), connectedness (score over the number of included and referring ontologies) and human languages used for class- and object property-labels. Ontology search in OntoSelect is based on a combined measure of coverage, structure and connectedness. Further, and in contrast to other ontology search engines, OntoSelect provides ontology search based on a complete web document instead of one or more keywords only.     (1J7A)

Resources     (1J8)

Questions, Answers & Discourse     (1J9)

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Questions and Discussion captured from the chat session     (1J10)

Peter P. Yim: Welcome to the Joint OOR-Ontolog Panel Discussion Session - Thu 04-Dec-2008     (1J10A)

  • Subject: Ontology Registry and Repository Technology & Infrastructure Landscape - II     (1J10B)

o Dr. Paul Buitelaar (DFKI, Germany) &     (1J10D)

o Mr. Peter Yim (Ontolog; CIM3)     (1J10E)

o Dr. Mathieu d'Aquin (KMi, Open University, UK) - "Watson: A Semantic Web Gateway, and Towards a Decentralized Ontology Repository"     (1J10G)

o Mr. Matthew Horridge (University of Manchester, UK) - "The TONES Ontology Repository"     (1J10H)

o Dr. Paul Buitelaar (DFKI, Germany) - "OntoSelect: A Browser and Search Engine for Ontologies"     (1J10I)

Peter P. Yim: if you are still recognized as "anonymous" (i.e. you don't see your own name under "Members" on the right pane),     (1J10K)

please click on the "Settings" button (top center) and swap in your name (in WikiWord format) ... thanks     (1J10L)

Gully Burns@ISI: Quick Question: What is the OWL ontology editor that Mathieu showed a screenshot of (see Slide 14)?     (1J10M)

Paul Buitelaar: if not mistaken the NeOn toolkit - Mathieu?     (1J10N)

Mathieu Daquin: To Gully Burns@ISI, this is the NeOn toolkit, the ontology editor developed as part of the NeOn Project     (1J10O)

Gully Burns@ISI: Great! Thank you, I'll certainly take a look at this.     (1J10P)

Rex Brooks: Mathieu, Is 'Power Aqua' still available? I got a 404 message when I clicked on the entry in a google search.     (1J10Q)

It seemed very useful. I was also curious whether it was an intentional double entendre for Pourquoi?     (1J10R)

Mathieu Daquin: oops, there have been problems with the KMi website lately, but in normal circunstances, it should be available.     (1J10S)

Mathieu Daquin: About the double entendre, I don't think so, but that's a great explaination... we might use it     (1J10T)

Seba Jean-Baptiste@INL: Can TONES be used to test created ontologies without committing them to the repository?     (1J10V)

Bijan Parsia: TONES is the name of a project, not of tools     (1J10W)

Bijan Parsia: You can extract all the metrics used in the repository using Protege4 or the metrics web service     (1J10X)

Bijan Parsia: All the owl.cs services have a uri based interface for programmatic access.     (1J10Z)

Seba Jean-Baptiste@INL: From what I hear in this presentation. I thought it was an ontology repository.     (1J10AA)

Bijan Parsia: The TONES repository *is* an ontology repository     (1J10AB)

Seba Jean-Baptiste@INL: OK     (1J10AC)

Bijan Parsia: It is the ontology repository of the TONES project     (1J10AD)

Bijan Parsia: So perhaps I misunderstand your question? I believe the code supporting the repository is downloadable     (1J10AE)

Bijan Parsia: Generally as part of the OWL API (or built on it)     (1J10AF)

Mathieu Daquin: How are the ontologies sorted by DL expressivity? alphabetically?     (1J10AG)

Bijan Parsia: It is configurable     (1J10AH)

Bijan Parsia: You have a set of metrics (which is user configurable)     (1J10AI)

Bijan Parsia: and when you click on one it sorts by that     (1J10AJ)

Mathieu Daquin: OK, but how do you get a total order for DL expressivity? would be nice if it was based on complexity...     (1J10AK)

Bijan Parsia: It's just alphabetic     (1J10AL)

Bijan Parsia: There is no total order     (1J10AM)

Bijan Parsia: SHIQ, SHI, SHOQ are all EXPTIME     (1J10AN)

Bijan Parsia: Most of our users are looking for ontologies with particular expressivities e.g., to test a certain reasoner     (1J10AO)

Bijan Parsia: As we develop difficulty metrics we'll add them     (1J10AP)

Bijan Parsia: See current slide (slide #15 of MatthewHorridge's slide deck)     (1J10AR)

Harold Solbrig: How does TONES relate to BioPortal? It seems like some of the metrics, annotations, etc. goals are very similar...     (1J10AS)

Bijan Parsia: I dont' see any metrics on bioportal     (1J10AU)

Bijan Parsia: And it seems to be reuse oriented     (1J10AV)

Bijan Parsia: Could you point me exactly to what you mean?     (1J10AW)

Harold Solbrig: Was thinking particularly about slide 13, where, last I knew, BioPortal's goal was to collect documentation,     (1J10AX)

annotation, usage, etc. Just curious whether there was any planned collaboration...     (1J10AY)

Bijan Parsia: None at the moment. All our metric analyzers are available via the web service and the OWL API so can be reused.     (1J10AZ)

If they develop an interesting corpus from our perspective we'll certainly ask for it     (1J10AAA)

Bijan Parsia: I see some similar goals (e.g., multiple ontologies exploration)     (1J10AAC)

Bijan Parsia: Though with a different focus     (1J10AAD)

Bijan Parsia: Also, for us, it's not just browsing multiple ontologies, but e.g., metric centric browsing.     (1J10AAE)

I.e., what do we need to look out to understand the characteristic use of disjointWith     (1J10AAF)

Bijan Parsia: s/look out/look at/     (1J10AAG)

Trish Whetzel: WRT to BioPortal, a feature to display ontology metrics is currently being developed     (1J10AAH)

as well as a Protege plugin to calculate this information     (1J10AAI)

Gully Burns@ISI: I have a question for the panelists concerning supporting domain ontologies.     (1J10AAJ)

The TONES project is specifically geared towards providing support for ontology research...     (1J10AAK)

I imagine that there a number of concerns involving documentation, presentation and     (1J10AAL)

classifying different ontologies. What kind of issues do we need to consider to support     (1J10AAM)

domain-based ontologies?     (1J10AAN)

Gully Burns@ISI: ... (the above question was addressed by the panel verbally) ... Thank you     (1J10AAO)

Carlos Rueda: Question for Mathieu d'Aquin but also for the other panelists: This is related with the mechansm     (1J10AAP)

to extract metatada from the ontologies. How is this accomplished?     (1J10AAQ)

does it search for OMV associated attributes; perhaps found embedded, linked, or how?     (1J10AAR)

What about best-preactices? ... (this question was addressed by the panel verbally) ... Thanks!!     (1J10AAS)

Peter P. Yim (12:32pm PST): Great session ... Thanks everyone!     (1J10AAT)

Audio Recording of this Session     (1K)

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