Lightweight Ontologies

  • John Davies


In this chapter, we discuss the notion of lightweight ontologies. First defining what we mean by ontology in our sense, we proceed to relate ontology to other related knowledge organisation structures, formal and less formal. We then consider the notion of lightweight ontology, principally based on the expressivity of the ontology description, rather than other possible aspects such as scope, depth or computational tractability, though as we discuss, these other aspects are not entirely unrelated. We then look at ontologies and the semantic web, the emergence of which over the past 10–15 years has seen increased interest in ontologies and associated topics. We proceed to examine 3 key areas where ontologies are being used in IT systems today and briefly discuss the centrality of ontologies and semantic technology to computer science in the future.


Description Logic Service Orient Architecture Business Process Execution Language Semantic Technology Enterprise Application Integration 
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.



Céline van Damme is thanked for insightful discussions about folksonomies and informal ontolgoies in the enterprise. Section 9.4 is based partly on Warren and Davies (2007), while Section 9.6 is based partly on Davies et al. (2006).


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Copyright information

© Springer Netherlands 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BT Innovate, British Telecommunications plcLondonUK

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