Common Upper Ontology for Cross-Domain Semantic Interoperability The U.S. Army Communications Electronics Command James Schoening email@example.com (732)532-5812 19 May 2004 CECOM Bottom Line: THE WARFIGHTER
Question #1: Would a ‘good enough’ common upper ontology provide benefits?(Assuming feasibility) • Yes responses: • Obrst: “ANY upper ontology is better than none.”(1) • Cassidy: “Yes, it is desirable and feasible to develop a common upper ontology within a large organization.” http://grouper.ieee.org/groups/suo/email/msg12537.html • No responses: None
Question #2: Can we achieve cross-domain semantic interoperability without a common ontology? • No responses: • Cassidy (IEEE): “there is no other way to communicate conceptual information between computers that can begin to approximate the efficiency of an upper ontology.” http://grouper.ieee.org/groups/suo/email/msg12537.html • West (IEEE): “Either they both need to be mapped to (or use) a common ontology, or you need to do a one to one mapping “http://grouper.ieee.org/groups/suo/email/msg12543.html • Obrst: “Ultimately, no, you cannot.”(1) • Yes responses: • Polikoff: “I understand Tim Berners-Lee believes semantic interoperability can be achieved without a common upper ontology.”
Question #3 (New): Is a common upper ontology feasible? • Yes responses: • Cassidy:”standard upper ontology is perfectly feasible” http://grouper.ieee.org/groups/suo/email/msg12537.html • No Responses: • SOWA: “too brittle to accommodate all the variations and modifications that inevitably arise.” http://grouper.ieee.org/groups/suo/email/msg12561.html • SOWA: Cyc, which has spent 20 years developing a tightly-organized ontology from top to bottom without achieving a single money-making application, http://grouper.ieee.org/groups/suo/email/msg12539.html • SOWA: “not going to get there by a brute-force legislation of one universal ontology. http://grouper.ieee.org/groups/suo/email/msg12540.html • My Response: Many known and unknown challenges. We won’t know until we try. May be hard, very heard. But DoD must try.
Question #4 (New): What are the tasks and challenges? (If a common upper ontology is selected by Army, DoD, Fed) • Improving selected upper ontology? • Developing domain ontologies? • Finding qualified employees/contractors? • Mapping legacy systems? • Conformance standards and testing?
Army Common Upper Ontology Evaluation Team • Awaiting approval of Army CIO/G-6 charter to: • Explore benefits/feasibility • Evaluate candidates • Identify technical challenges and way ahead • Report out by 30 July 2004 • Initial organizations represented: • CECOM; TRADOC; FCS; ARL; CERDEC-C2D; CERDEC-I2W • Will expand membership as much as we can • Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to join. • Partially evaluating in open with IEEE at http://suo.ieee.org/SUO/Evaluations/