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Thinking ONtologiES

Objective

Ontologies are seen as the key technology used to describe the semantics of information at various sites, overcoming the problem of implicit and hidden knowledge and thus enabling exchange of semantic contents. As such, they have found applications in key growth areas, such as e-commerce, bio-informatics, Grid computing, and the Semantic Web. The increased demand for multiple large-scale and complex ontologies poses novel challenges on all tasks related to ontology engineering (i.e. their design, maintenance, merging, and integration) and to the operation with ontologies (i.e. the run-time access to ontologies both by human users and by software agents). In all such tasks, understanding and taking into account the implicit knowledge of an ontology is crucial.

Nowadays, it is widely accepted that a logical underpinning of ontologies is desirable since it provides a well-defined semantics and allows to re-phrase system services of ontology tools in terms of logical reasoning problems. This, in turn, enables one to base such system services on automated reasoning procedures. Such a reasoning support already proved to be an essential component of state-of-the-art ontology management tools; the range and power of services provided are, however, far from being sufficient. The aim of the TONES project is to study and develop automated reasoning techniques for engineering of and operation with ontologies, and devise methodologies for the deployment of such techniques in advanced tools and applications. This will be achieved by (i) defining a common semantical framework, based on logic, for ontologies, (ii) identifying the key reasoning services needed to support ontology tasks, (iii) developing suitable algorithmic techniques for the provision of such services, (iv) investigating and studying the efficient implementation of the techniques, and (v) developing methodologies on how to exploit the reasoning services in tools for ontologies.

Funding Scheme

STREP - Specific Targeted Research Project

Coordinator

Libera Università di Bolzano
Address
Piazza Domenicani 3
39100 Bolzano
Italy

Participants (4)

TECHNISCHE UNIVERSITAET DRESDEN
Germany
Address
Hans-grundig-str. 25 (Do Not Include In Mail Address)
01062 Dresden
THE UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER
United Kingdom
Address
Oxford Road
M13 9PL Manchester
Technische Universität Hamburg Harburg
Germany
Address
Harburger Schloßstraße 20
21079 Hamburg
UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI ROMA "LA SAPIENZA"
Italy
Address
Via Eudossiana, 18
00185 Rome