A theory of specialization constraints for complex objects

  • G. E. Weddell
  • N. Coburn
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 470)


Most semantic data models and object-oriented data models allow entity and object classes to be organized according to a generalization taxonomy. In addition, range restrictions (or property typing) may be specified not only on properties associated with a given class, but also on properties inherited from superclasses. In this paper, we consider a more general form of specialization constraint in which range restrictions are associated with property value paths, instead of with the properties themselves. One consequence is that the constraints enable a form of molecular abstraction, in which the internals of more complicated objects can be defined in terms of a collection of more primitive types. Sound and complete axiomatizations are given for two models: one not assuming a most specialized class rule (MSC), and another satisfying MSC together with an additional almost lower semilattice condition. Efficient decision procedures for both cases are also presented.


Parse Tree Class Schema Specialization Constraint Proof Outline Complete Axiomatization 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. E. Weddell
    • 1
  • N. Coburn
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of WaterlooCanada

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