Viewpoints on Emergent Semantics

  • Philippe Cudré-Mauroux
  • Karl Aberer
  • Alia I. Abdelmoty
  • Tiziana Catarci
  • Ernesto Damiani
  • Arantxa Illaramendi
  • Mustafa Jarrar
  • Robert Meersman
  • Erich J. Neuhold
  • Christine Parent
  • Kai-Uwe Sattler
  • Monica Scannapieco
  • Stefano Spaccapietra
  • Peter Spyns
  • Guy De Tré
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 4090)


We introduce a novel view on how to deal with the problems of semantic interoperability in distributed systems. This view is based on the concept of emergent semantics, which sees both the representation of semantics and the discovery of the proper interpretation of symbols as the result of a self-organizing process performed by distributed agents exchanging symbols and having utilities dependent on the proper interpretation of the symbols. This is a complex systems perspective on the problem of dealing with semantics. We highlight some of the distinctive features of our vision and point out preliminary examples of its application.


Multiagent System Syntactic Structure Usability Perspective Linguistic Resource Distribute Information System 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    United nations directories for electronic data interchange for administration, commerce and transport,
  2. 2.
    Abdelmoty, A.I., Smart, P.D., Jones, C.B., Fu, G., Finch, D.: A critical evaluation of ontology languages for geographic information retrieval on the internet. Journal of Visual Languages and Computing 16(4), 331–358 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Aberer, K., Catarci, T., Cudré-Mauroux, P., Dillon, T., Grimm, S., Hacid, M., Illarramendi, A., Jarrar, M., Kashyap, V., Mecella, M., Mena, E., Neuhold, E.J., Ouksel, A.M., Risse, T., Scannapieco, M., Saltor, F., de Santis, L., Spaccapietra, S., Staab, S., Studer, R., De Troyer, O.: Emergent Semantics Systems. In: Bouzeghoub, M., Goble, C.A., Kashyap, V., Spaccapietra, S. (eds.) ICSNW 2004. LNCS, vol. 3226, pp. 14–43. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Aberer, K., Cudré-Mauroux, P.: Semantic Overlay Networks. In: International Conference on Very Large Databases (VLDB) (2005)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Aberer, K., Cudré-Mauroux, P., Ouksel, A.M.: Emergent Semantics Principles and Issues. In: Lee, Y., Li, J., Whang, K.-Y., Lee, D. (eds.) DASFAA 2004. LNCS, vol. 2973, pp. 25–38. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Aberer, K., Cudré-Mauroux, P., Hauswirth, M.: Start making sense: The Chatty Web approach for global semantic agreements. Journal of Web Semantics 1(1), 89–114 (2003)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Aberer, K., Cudré-Mauroux, P., Hauswirth, M.: The chatty web: emergent semantics through gossiping. In: WWW 2003, pp. 197–206 (2003)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Aberer, K., Despotovic, Z.: Managing trust in a p2p information systems. In: Intl. Conf. on Information and Knowledge Management (CIKM) (2001)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Adam, N.R., Wortmann, J.C.: Security control methods for statistical databases: A comparative study. ACM Computing Surveys 21(4) (1989)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Agrawal, R., Evfimievski, A., Srikant, R.: A formal analysis of information disclosure in data exchange. In: Proc. of SIGMOD (2003)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Altareva, E., Conrad, S.: Statistical Analysis as Methodological Framework for Data(base) Integration. In: Song, I.-Y., Liddle, S.W., Ling, T.-W., Scheuermann, P. (eds.) ER 2003. LNCS, vol. 2813, pp. 17–30. Springer, Heidelberg (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Arampatzis, A., Kreveld, M., Jones, C.B., Vaid, S., Clough, P., Joho, H., Sanderson, M., Benkert, M., Wolff, A.: Web-based delineation of imprecise regions. In: SIGIR Workshop on Geographic Information Retrieval (2004)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Aringhieri, R., Damiani, E., De Capitani Di Vimercati, S., Paraboschi, S., Samarati, P.: Fuzzy techniques for trust and reputation management in anonymous peer-to-peer systems. Journal of the American Society for Information, Science and Technology 1(1) (2006)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Audun, J., Roslan, I., Boyd, C.A.: Survey of trust and reputation systems for online service provision. Decision Support Systems (to appear)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Bagüés, M.I., Bermúdez, J., Illarramendi, A., Tablado, A., Goñi, A.: Semantic interoperation among data systems at a communication level. Journal on Data Semantics V (2006)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Balley, S., Parent, C., Spaccapietra, S.: Modeling geographic data with multiple representations. International Journal of Geographic Information Systems 18(4), 329–354 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Bosc, P., Kraft, D., Petry, F.: Fuzzy sets in database and information systems: status and opportunities. Fuzzy Sets and Systems 153(3), 418–426 (2005)CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Bosc, P., Prade, H.: An introduction to fuzzy set and possibility theory based approaches to the treatment of uncertainty and imprecision in database management systems. In: Workshop on Uncertainty Management in Information Systems: From Needs to Solutions, Catalina, California (1993)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Bray, T., Paoli, J., Sperberg-McQueen, C.M., Maler, E., Yergeau, F.: Extensible markup language (XML) 1.0,
  20. 20.
    Buckles, B.P., Petry, F.: Generalised database and information systems. In: Bezdek, J.C. (ed.) Analysis of fuzzy Information. CRC Press, Boca Raton (1987)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Bylander, T., Chandrasekaran, B.: Generic tasks in knowledge-based reasoning: The right level of abstraction for knowledge acquisition. Knowledge Acquisition for Knowledge Based Systems 1 (1988)Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Castelfranchi, C., Falcone, R., Pezzulo, G.: Trust in information sources as a source for trust: a fuzzy approach. In: International Joint Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent systems (AAMAS) (2003)Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Ceravolo, P., Damiani, E., Viviani, M.: Adding a Trust Layer to Semantic Web Metadata. In: Soft Computing for Information Retrieval on the Web. Elsevier, Amsterdam (2006)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Corallo, A., Damiani, E., Elia, G.: An ontology-based knowledge management system enabling regional innovation. In: Eurasia-ICT Workshop on E-Learning Platforms Technologies (2002)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Cudré-Mauroux, P., Aberer, K.: A Necessary Condition For Semantic Interoperability in the Large. In: Ontologies, DataBases, and Applications of Semantics for Large Scale Information Systems (ODBASE) (2004)Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Cudré-Mauroux, P., Aberer, K., Feher, A.: Probabilistic Message Passing in Peer Data Management Systems. In: International Conference on Data Engineering (ICDE) (2006)Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Damiani, E., De Capitani di Vimercati, S., Paraboschi, S., Samarati, P.: Managing and sharing servents’ reputations in p2p systems. IEEE Trans. Knowl. Data Eng. 15(4), 840–853 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Dyreson, C.E.: A bibliography on uncertainty management in information systems. In: Motro, A., Smets, P. (eds.) Uncertainty Management in Information Systems: From Needs to Solutions. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston (1997)Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Egenhofer, M.: Towards the semantic geospatial web. In: Proceedings of ACM-GIS, pp. 1–4 (2002)Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Emekci, F., Agrawal, D., El Abbadi, A., Gulbeden, A.: Privacy preserving query processing using third parties. In: Proc. ICDE (2006)Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Fodor, J., Marichal, J.L., Roubens, M.: Characterization of the ordered weighted averaging operators. IEEE Trans. on Fuzzy Systems 3(2), 236–240 (1995)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    van Harmelen, F., Huang, Z., Stuckenschmidt, H., Haase, P., Sure, Y.: A Framework for Handling Inconsistency in Changing Ontologies. In: Gil, Y., Motta, E., Benjamins, V.R., Musen, M.A. (eds.) ISWC 2005. LNCS, vol. 3729, pp. 353–367. Springer, Heidelberg (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    George, M., Beckwithand, R., Fellbaum, C., Gross, C., Miller, K.: Introduction to wordnet: an on-line lexical database. International Journal of Lexicography 3(4), 235–244 (1990)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Gruber, T.R.: A Translation Approach to Portable Ontology Specifications. Knowledge Acquisition 6(2), 199–221 (1993)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Guarino, N.: Formal ontologies and information systems. In: Guarino, N. (ed.) Proceedings of FOIS 1998, pp. 3–15. IOS Press, Amsterdam (1998)Google Scholar
  36. 36.
    Guarino, N.: Formal ontology in information systems. In: Proceedings of FOIS, pp. 3–15 (1998)Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    Halevy, A.Y.: Answering queries using views: A survey. VLDB Journal 10(4), 270–294 (2001)MATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Halevy, A.Y., Ives, Z.G., Madhavan, J., Mork, P., Suciu, D., Tatarinov, I.: The Piazza Peer Data Management System. IEEE Trans. Knowl. Data Eng. 16(7), 787–798 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Heinzle, F., Sester, M.: Derivation of implicit information from spatial data sets with data mining. In: 20th Congress of the International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS) (2004)Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Euzenat, J., et al.: State of the art on current alignment techniques. In: KnowledgeWeb Deliverable 2.2.3,
  41. 41.
    Jarrar, M.: Towards the notion of gloss, and the adoption of linguistic recourses in formal ontology engineering. In: Global Wordnet Conference (GWC) (2006)Google Scholar
  42. 42.
    Jarrar, M., Demey, J., Meersman, R.: On using conceptual data modeling for ontology engineering. Journal on Data Semantics; Special issue on Best papers from the ER, ODBASE, and COOPIS 2002 Conferences, LNCS vol. 2519, pp.185–207. Springer, Heidelberg (2002)Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    Jarrar, M., Meersman, R.: Formal ontology engineering in the dogma approach. In: Meersman, R., Tari, Z., et al. (eds.) CoopIS 2002, DOA 2002, and ODBASE 2002. LNCS, vol. 2519, pp. 1238–1254. Springer, Heidelberg (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Jones, C.B., Abdelmoty, A., Finch, D., Fu, G., Vaid, S.: The spirit spatial search engine: Architecture, ontologies and spatial indexing. In: Egenhofer, M.J., Freksa, C., Miller, H.J. (eds.) GIScience 2004. LNCS, vol. 3234, pp. 125–139. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    Keating, T., Montoya, A.: Folksonomy extends geospatial taxonomy. Directions Magazine (2005)Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    Klien, E., Lutz, M.: The role of spatial relations in automating the semantic annotation of geodata. In: Cohn, A.G., Mark, D.M. (eds.) COSIT 2005. LNCS, vol. 3693, pp. 133–148. Springer, Heidelberg (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    Kolas, D., Hebeler, J., Dean, M.: Geospatial semantic web: Architecture of ontologies. In: Rodríguez, M.A., Cruz, I., Levashkin, S., Egenhofer, M.J. (eds.) GeoS 2005. LNCS, vol. 3799, pp. 183–194. Springer, Heidelberg (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. 48.
    Kuhn, W.: Geospatial semantics: Why, of what and how. In: Spaccapietra, S., Zimányi, E. (eds.) Journal on Data Semantics III. LNCS, vol. 3534, pp. 1–24. Springer, Heidelberg (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. 49.
    Lakshmanan, L.V.S., Ng, R.T., Ramesh, G.: To do or not to do: the dilemma of disclosing anonymized data. In: Proc. of SIGMOD (2005)Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    Lenzerini, M.: Data Integration: A Theoretical Perspective. In: PODS 2002, pp. 233–246 (2002)Google Scholar
  51. 51.
    Lesser, E., Everest, K.: Using communities of practice to manage intellectual capital. Ivey Business Journal, 37–41 (March/April 2000)Google Scholar
  52. 52.
    Li, Y., Tygar, J.D., Hellerstein, J.M.: Private matching. Intel Research, IRB-TR-04-005 (2004)Google Scholar
  53. 53.
    Lieberman, J., Pehle, T., Dean, M.: Semantic evolution of geospatial web services. In: W3C Workshop on Frameworks for Semantics in Web Services (2005)Google Scholar
  54. 54.
    Madhavan, J., Bernstein, P.A., Doan, A., Halevy, A.Y.: Corpus-based Schema Matching. In: International Conference on Data Engineering (ICDE) (2005)Google Scholar
  55. 55.
    Madhavan, J., Halevy, A.Y.: Composing Mappings Among Data Sources. In: Aberer, K., Koubarakis, M., Kalogeraki, V. (eds.) VLDB 2003. LNCS, vol. 2944, pp. 572–583. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)Google Scholar
  56. 56.
    Martin, T.P., Azvine, B.: Acquisition of soft taxonomies for intelligent personal hierarchies and the soft semantic web. BT Technology Journal 21(4), 113–122 (2003)MATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. 57.
    Mena, E., Kashyap, V., Illarramendi, A., Sheth, A.P.: Imprecise Answers in Distributed Environments: Estimation of Information Loss for Multi-Ontology Based Query Processing. Int. J. Cooperative Inf. Syst. 9(4), 403–425 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. 58.
    Miklau, G., Suciu, D.: A formal analysis of information disclosure in data exchange. In: Proc. of SIGMOD (2004)Google Scholar
  59. 59.
    Mitra, P., Noy, N.F., Jaiswal, A.R.: OMEN: A Probabilistic Ontology Mapping Tool. In: Gil, Y., Motta, E., Benjamins, V.R., Musen, M.A. (eds.) ISWC 2005. LNCS, vol. 3729, pp. 537–547. Springer, Heidelberg (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. 60.
    Motro, A.: Management of uncertainty in database systems. In: Kim, W. (ed.) Modern Database Systems, The object model, interoperability and beyond. Addison-Wesley, Reading (1995)Google Scholar
  61. 61.
    Naor, M., Pinkas, B.: Oblivious transfer and polynomial evaluation. In: Proc. of the 31th ACM Symposium on Theory of Computing (1999)Google Scholar
  62. 62.
    Naumann, F., Freytag, C., Leser, U.: Completeness of integrated information sources. Inf. Syst. 29(7), 583–615 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. 63.
    Newell, A.: The knowledge level. Artificial Intelligence 18(1) (1982)Google Scholar
  64. 64.
    Ogden, C.K., Richards, I.A.: The Meaning of Meaning: A Study of the Influence of Language upon Thought and of the Science of Symbolism, 10th edn. Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd., London (1923)Google Scholar
  65. 65.
    Ouksel, A.M.: A Framework for a Scalable Agent Architecture of Cooperating Heterogeneous Knowledge Sources. Springer, Heidelberg (1999)Google Scholar
  66. 66.
    Ouksel, A.M., Ahmed, I.: Ontologies are not the panacea in data integration: A flexible coordinator for context construction. Journal of Distributed and Parallel Databases 7(1) (1999)Google Scholar
  67. 67.
    Pan, R., Ding, Z., Yu, Y., Peng, Y.: A Bayesian Network Approach to Ontology Mapping. In: Gil, Y., Motta, E., Benjamins, V.R., Musen, M.A. (eds.) ISWC 2005. LNCS, vol. 3729, pp. 563–577. Springer, Heidelberg (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. 68.
    Parent, C., Spaccapietra, S., Zimanyi, E.: Conceptual Design for Traditional and Spatio-Temporal Applications – The MADS Approach. Springer, Heidelberg (2005)Google Scholar
  69. 69.
    Parent, C., Spaccapietra, S., Zimanyi, E.: The murmur project: Modeling and querying multi-representation spatio-temporal databases. Information Systems (2005)Google Scholar
  70. 70.
    Parsons, S.: Current approaches to handling imperfect information in data and knowledge bases. IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering 8(3), 353–372 (1996)CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  71. 71.
    Petrakis, Y., Pitoura, E.: On Constructing Small Worlds in Unstructured Peer-to-Peer Systems. In: Lindner, W., Mesiti, M., Türker, C., Tzitzikas, Y., Vakali, A.I. (eds.) EDBT 2004. LNCS, vol. 3268, pp. 415–424. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. 72.
    Prade, H., Testemale, C.: Generalizing database relational algebra for the treatment of incomplete or uncertain information and vague queries. Information Sciences 34, 115–143 (1984)MATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  73. 73.
    Raghavan, P.: Structured and unstructured search in enterprises: Verity. IEEE Data Engineering Bulletin 4(6) (2001)Google Scholar
  74. 74.
    Rahm, E., Bernstein, P.A.: A survey of approaches to automatic schema matching. VLDB Journal 10(4), 334–350 (2001)MATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. 75.
    Richardson, M., Agrawal, R., Domingos, P.: Trust management for the semantic web. In: Fensel, D., Sycara, K.P., Mylopoulos, J. (eds.) ISWC 2003. LNCS, vol. 2870, pp. 351–368. Springer, Heidelberg (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. 76.
    Sabater, J., Sierra, C.: Reputation and social network analysis in multi-agent systems. In: International Joint Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent systems (AAMAS) (2002)Google Scholar
  77. 77.
    Samarati, P., Sweeney, L.: Generalizing data to provide anonymity when disclosing information. In: Proc. of PODS (1998)Google Scholar
  78. 78.
    Sattler, K.-U., Geist, I., Schallehn, E.: Concept-based querying in mediator systems. VLDB Journal 14(1), 97–111 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. 79.
    Schmidt, S., Steele, R., Dillon, T.S., Chang, E.: Building a fuzzy trust network in unsupervised multi-agent environments. In: OTM Workshops (2005)Google Scholar
  80. 80.
    Spyns, P., De Bo, J.: Ontologies: a revamped cross-disciplinary buzzword or a truly promising interdisciplinary research topic? Linguistica Antverpiensia - NS (3), 279–292 (2004)Google Scholar
  81. 81.
    De Trè, G., De Caluwe, R., Prade, H.: The ansi/x3/sparc dbms framework: Report of the study group on data base management system. Information Systems 3 (1978)Google Scholar
  82. 82.
    Velegrakis, Y., Miller, R.J., Popa, L.: Mapping Adaptation under Evolving Schemas. In: Aberer, K., Koubarakis, M., Kalogeraki, V. (eds.) VLDB 2003. LNCS, vol. 2944, pp. 584–595. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)Google Scholar
  83. 83.
    Verykios, V., Bertino, E., Fovino, I.N., Provenza, L.P., Saygin, Y., Elmagarmi, A.K.: State of the art on privacy preserving data mining. Sigmod Record 33(1) (2004)Google Scholar
  84. 84.
    Wenger, E.: Communities of practice: The key to knowledge strategy. Knowledge Directions 6(4), 48–64 (1999)Google Scholar
  85. 85.
    Wiederhold, G.: Mediators in the Architecture of Future Information Systems. IEEE Computer 25(3), 38–49 (1992)Google Scholar
  86. 86.
    Wong, S.K.M., Xiang, Y., Nie, X.: Representation of bayesian networks as relational databases. In: International Conference on Information Processing and Management of Uncertainty, Paris, France, pp. 159–165 (1994)Google Scholar
  87. 87.
    Yu, C., Popa, L.: Semantic Adaptation of Schema Mappings when Schemas Evolve. In: Proc. of VLDB 2005, pp. 1006–1017 (2005)Google Scholar
  88. 88.
    Zadeh, L.A.: Fuzzy sets. Information and Control 8, 338–353 (1965)MATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  89. 89.
    Zadeh, L.A.: Fuzzy sets as a basis for a theory of possibility. Fuzzy Sets and Systems 1, 3–28 (1978)MATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philippe Cudré-Mauroux
    • 1
  • Karl Aberer
    • 1
  • Alia I. Abdelmoty
    • 2
  • Tiziana Catarci
    • 3
  • Ernesto Damiani
    • 4
  • Arantxa Illaramendi
    • 5
  • Mustafa Jarrar
    • 6
  • Robert Meersman
    • 6
  • Erich J. Neuhold
    • 7
  • Christine Parent
    • 1
  • Kai-Uwe Sattler
    • 8
  • Monica Scannapieco
    • 3
  • Stefano Spaccapietra
    • 1
  • Peter Spyns
    • 6
  • Guy De Tré
    • 9
  1. 1.EPFLSwitzerland
  2. 2.Cardiff UniversityUK
  3. 3.University of Rome La SapienzaItaly
  4. 4.University of MilanItaly
  5. 5.University of the Basque CountrySpain
  6. 6.Vrije Universiteit BrusselBelgium
  7. 7.Fraunhofer IPSIGermany
  8. 8.Technical University IlmenauGermany
  9. 9.Ghent UniversityBelgium

Personalised recommendations