ontologies library open for business

Tom Gruber <Gruber@HPP.Stanford.EDU>
Date: Mon, 19 Jul 1993 10:54:40 -0700
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From: Tom Gruber <Gruber@HPP.Stanford.EDU>
To: Multiple recipients of list <srkb-list@ISI.EDU>
Subject: ontologies library open for business

Part of the charter of the SRKB working group of the ARPA Knowledge
Sharing Effort is to collect and disseminate ontologies worthy of
study.  There has been some call for a public place for such
ontologies to be made available.   

There is now a directory open to anonymous ftp where ontologies can be
posted for public review.  In 

  ksl.stanford.edu: /pub/knowledge-sharing/ontologies/

you will find several ontologies available.  Each is in its own
directory, consisting of several files.   The ontologies in there so
far have all been analyzed and debugged using Ontolingua, but there is
no requirement that the ontologies be in that form.  For the
Ontolingua ontologies, each directory might contain several files
with the .lisp extension -- each of these should contain an ontolingua
theory.  For each theory file, there are other files generated
  .xref	a report on the constants defined and dependencies on other theories
  .kif	the ontology in pure KIF (we're going to merge ontolingua
             syntax with KIF definitions in the near future)
  .epikit translation into epikit, predicate logic system
  .loom 	translation into Loom, a description logic
  .gf	translation into Generic Frame, a simple frame syntax
	supported by Ontolingua and easily turned into other frame languages

These ontologies are also accompanied by introductory texts.  In a
sense, these ontologies are specification documents with a large
component that is machine readable.  We are currently working on
techniques to link them into the World Wide Web as a hypertext
document database.

The ontologies in there right now are

  KIF   - the built in ontologies of the KIF language (axiomatizations
          	of sets, lists, numbers, relations, and KIF language
	expressions).  That's right, most of KIF is an ontology!

  Ontolingua -- the Frame Ontology and its specialization, Slot
	Constraint Sugar.  The Frame Ontology is an axiomatic
	definition of object-centered concepts (class, slot)
	that integrates tightly with KIF relations and sets.

  Engineering-Math -- a family of ontologies offering a coherent,
	comprehensive foundation for mathematical enginering models.
	It includes theories of physical quantities, dimensions, 
	units of measure, magnitudes ranging from real numbers to high
	order tensors, quantity functions, and algebraic operators for
	each type of quantity.  THIS IS A NEW RELEASE -- THE ALPHA
	the domain of helical springs are provided.

  Configuration design -- a formal theory of configuration design,
	including parameters, constraints, components, subpart
	relations, and notions of design validity.  There is 
              a specialization of the theory for the VT elevator
	design task, and -- LISTEN UP YOU LARGE KB FANS --
 	a large example knowledge base of components and 
	constraints.  The knowledge acquisition community
	is running an experiment in problem-solving method
	reuse based on this task and KB.  This was developed as
	a joint effort of several groups, especially Bill Birmingham
	and Jay Runkel at U Michigan.

  Job Assignment -- formally defined vocabulary for describing 
	job assignment tasks.  Job assignment is a specialization
	of scheduling.  This was contributed by  Toshiyuki Hama and
	Masahiro Hori from IBM Japan.
You are invited to offer ontologies for public review, and to make
critical commentary on those already proposed.  We have put off
releasing anything until we had some fairly well-understood examples.
Now it is up to you to contribute your ideas and results.  Please feel
free to use this list for technical discussion on specific ontologies.

Thanks for your interest and input.
					Tom Gruber