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Concept Grouping for Documentation

Ontology reuse attracts the interest of the Semantic Web community and its current pragmatic version the Linked Data community where ontologies are considered as shared knowledge and are interlinked. Even though ontology reuse is part of various ontology engineering methodologies there are no best practice solutions which describe how existing ontologies should be analyzed for their (re)usability. In the field of software engineering component-based development and appropriate documentation are established methods to support reuse. While the adoption of the former method to ontology engineering has been addressed in various scientific publications within the ontology engineering community the latter has not been tackled in depth yet. Therefore, only a few of the many ontologies which are published and available online are well documented.
The lack of good documentation makes reuse difficult because the decision process of the applicability of a candidate ontology becomes time-consuming. But on the other hand the process of documentation is an additional effort for the ontology developer which still lacks of an appropriate support system. Aiming at creating such a support system we analyzed existing hand-made ontology documentations and identified grouping of concepts as a proper means to provide an overview of an ontology's content. In case of large ontologies with thousands of concepts it is intuitively comprehensible that some kind of complexity reduction is necessary to understand an ontology. But even the Friend of a Friend (FOAF) vocabulary, which is a small ontology, uses a grouping of concepts in its specification (see Figure), in order to provide the reader with an easier way to understand the vocabulary. 


To support the processs of creating such concept groups for the documentation of ontologies we extended the SpecGen tool with an automatic concept grouping functionality. The customized version of SpecGen can be found here:

SpecGen Extension: http://www.csw.inf.fu-berlin.de/ontdocu/specgen/specgen7.zip



  • Mario Rothe: Automatische Gruppierung von Konzepten zur Erleichterung des Verständnisses von Ontologien, Diploma Thesis, FU Berlin
  • Maximilian Schröder: Implementierung einer Sonivis-Erweiterung zur strukturbasierten Partitionierung von OWL-Ontologien, Bachelor Thesis, FU Berlin
  • Engin Yilmaz: Ontologie-Partitionierung mittels Partikel Schwarm Optimierung, Diploma Thesis, FU Berlin
  • Dai-Phuc Ha: Grafische Darstellung und Analyse von Ontologien, Bachelor Thesis, FU Berlin
  • Coskun, G. (2013). Structure-based Partitioning of Semantic Web Ontologies. Doctoral Thesis, Freie Universität Berlin

2012-12-15 10:33

Abschlussveranstaltung des Corporate Semantic Web Projekts

5 Jahre Corporate Semantic Web Abschlussveranstaltung am 16.1.2013

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2012-12-07 18:20

CSW active in OMG API4KB Standardization

API4KB is an initiative within OMG that aims at defining a standard programming interface for knowledge bases

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© 2008 FU Berlin | Feedback
This work has been partially supported by the  InnoProfile-Corporate Semantic Web project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the BMBF Innovation Initiative for the New German Länder - Entrepreneurial Regions.
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