Web Ontology Language: OWL

Chapter
Part of the International Handbooks on Information Systems book series (INFOSYS)

Summary

The expressivity of RDF and RDF Schema that was described in [12] is deliberately very limited: RDF is (roughly) limited to binary ground predicates, and RDF Schema is (again roughly) limited to a subclass hierarchy and a property hierarchy, with domain and range definitions of these properties.

However, the Web Ontology Working Group of W3C [10] identified a number of characteristic use-cases for Ontologies on the Web which would require much more expressiveness than RDF and RDF Schema. It proceeded to define OWL, the language that is aimed to be the standardised and broadly accepted ontology language of the Semantic Web.

In this chapter, we first describe the motivation for OWL in terms of its requirements, and the resulting non-trivial relation with RDF Schema. We then describe the various language elements of OWL in some detail.

References

  1. 1.
    D. McGuinness, F. van Harmelen (eds.). OWL Web Ontology Language Overview http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/WD-owl-features-20030331/.
  2. 2.
    F. van Harmelen, J. Hendler, I. Horrocks, D. McGuinness, P. Patel-Schneider, L. Stein. In: M. Dean, G. Schreiber (eds.), OWL Web Ontology Language Reference http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/WD-owl-ref-20030331/.
  3. 3.
    M. Smith, C. Welty, D. McGuinness. OWL Web Ontology Language Guide http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/WD-owl-guide-20030331/.
  4. 4.
    P. Patel-Schneider, P. Hayes, I. Horrocks. OWL Web Ontology Language Semantics and Abstract Syntax http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/WD-owl-semantics-20030331/.
  5. 5.
    J. Hefflin. Web Ontology Language (OWL) Use Cases and Requirements http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/WD-webont-req-20030331/. Further interesting articles related to DAML+OIL and OIL include:
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    J. Broekstra et al. Enabling knowledge representation on the Web by extending RDF schema. In: Proc. 10th World Wide Web Conference (WWW’10), 2001.Google Scholar
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    D. Fensel et al. OIL: an ontology infrastructure for the semantic Web. IEEE Intelligent Systems 16, 2, 2001.Google Scholar
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    D. McGuinness. Ontologies come of age. In: D. Fensel et al. (eds), The Semantic Web: Why, What, and How. MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 2002.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    P. Patel-Schneider, I. Horrocks, F. van Harmelen. Reviewing the design of DAML+OIL: an ontology language for the semantic Web, Proceedings of AAAI’02. The key site on OWL is:Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    http://www.w3.org/2001/sw/WebOnt/. The two most relevant chapters from this Handbook are:
  11. 11.
    B. McBride. The resource description framework (RDF) and its vocabulary description language RDFS. In: S. Staab, R. Studer (eds.), The Handbook on Ontologies in Information Systems, Springer, Berlin, 2003.Google Scholar
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    F. Baader, I. Horrocks, U. Sattler. Description Logics. In: S. Staab, R. Studer (eds.), The Handbook on Ontologies in Information Systems, Springer, Berlin, 2003. The work on DLP has been reported in:Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    B. N. Grosof, I. Horrocks, R. Volz, S. Decker. Description logic programs: combining logic programs with description logic. In: Proceedings of the Twelfth World Wide Web Conference, pp. 48–57, 2003.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.FORTH-ICS and Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of CreteCreteGreece
  2. 2.Department of AIVrije Universiteit AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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