Extending the ORM Conceptual Schema Language and Design Procedure with Modeling Constructs for Capturing the Domain Ontology

Extending the ORM Conceptual Schema Language and Design Procedure with Modeling Constructs for Capturing the Domain Ontology

Peter Bollen (Maastricht University, The Netherlands)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-278-7.ch003
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In this chapter the authors extend the ORM conceptual modeling language with constructs for capturing the relevant parts of an application ontology in a list of concept definitions. The authors give the adapted ORM meta model and provide an extension of the accompanying Conceptual Schema Design Procedure (CSDP) to cater for the explicit modeling of the relevant parts of an application- or domain ontology in a list of concept definitions. The application of these modeling constructs will significantly increase the perceived quality and ease-of-use of (Web-based) applications.
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The objective of this book is to disseminate best practices and research outcomes of the information systems modeling (ISM) community to researchers, practitioners and students in the ISM field of knowledge. This chapter presents some extensions to an information modeling methodology called Object-Role Modeling (ORM) (Halpin, 2001).

ORM (including other fact-oriented languages (e.g. (Bakema, Zwart, & van der Lek, 1994; Lemmens, Nijssen, & Nijssen, 2007))) is a conceptual modeling approach that models the world in terms of objects and roles that they play (Halpin, 2001). ORM has a single fact encoding construct: the fact type, in contrast to other popular conceptual modeling methodologies, e.g. ER (Chen, 1976) and (E)ER (Teorey, Yang, & Fry, 1986) that contain at least two fact encoding constructs: the attribute and the relationship (Chen, 1976; Teorey et al., 1986).

The roots of ORM can be traced back to the early seventies, when the research focus in the ISM field was on database modeling languages (see for an overview of ORM’s history the review article of Halpin (Halpin, 2007)). The objective of the researchers at that time was to define a truly conceptual modeling language for expressing database requirements, independently from the database implementation languages, that were existing at that time, e.g. CODASYL, hierarchical, or relational and object-oriented databases. ORM (or one of its ancestors at any point in time) and other contemporary fact-oriented modeling languages, have evolved over the past 30 years. The modeling constructs have evolved in order to enable the language to model an ever increasing range of domain requirements in a declarative way. Until the nineties, ORM and other fact-oriented modeling languages were mainly focused on modeling the requirements in the information perspective. In the past 20 years, the language has been extended with modeling constructs and methodology, that also cover the process- and event- perspectives in conceptual modeling (Balsters, Carver, Halpin, & Morgan, 2006; Bollen, 2007a, 2007b; Morgan, 2006, 2007; Prabhakaran & Falkenberg, 1988).

In the literature a number of definitions for ontology can be found: “the definition of the basic terms and relations comprising the vocabulary of a topic area” (Neches et al., 1991), “ an ontology is a description of the concepts and relationships for an agent or a community of agents.” (Gruber, 1993), “ shared understanding of a domain that can be communicated between people and application systems.” (Fensel, 2001), “an ontology is a formal conceptualization of a real world, sharing a common understanding of this real world.” (Lammari & Metais, 2004, p.155). Burton-Jones et al. (2005) distinguish four types of material ontologies: application-, domain-, generic- and representation ontologies. Application ontologies specify definitions needed for a particular application, domain ontologies specify conceptualizations specific to a domain, generic ontologies specify conceptualizations generic to several domains and representation ontologies specify conceptualizations that underlie knowledge representation formalisms.

In the last 10 years, the penetration of the world-wide web into the heart of the business information systems, has lead to a renewed interest in conceptual modeling, albeit now from the perspective of ‘connected’ agents that communicate with each over via the internet. The research field that has attracted a lot of scholars and practitioners is the field of ontology, leading to standards for communication via the world wide web. Examples of these standards are the Web Ontology Language OWL (Bechhofer et al., 2004) and the Web Service Modeling Language WSML (Bruijn et al., 2005).

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Chapter 1
Terry Halpin
When modeling information systems, one often encounters subtyping aspects of the business domain that can prove challenging to implement in either... Sample PDF
Enriched Conceptualization of Subtyping
Chapter 2
Alessandro Artale, C. Maria Keet
This chapter focuses on formally representing life cycle semantics of part-whole relations in conceptual data models by utilizing the temporal... Sample PDF
Essential, Mandatory, and Shared Parts in Conceptual Data Models
Chapter 3
Peter Bollen
In this chapter the authors extend the ORM conceptual modeling language with constructs for capturing the relevant parts of an application ontology... Sample PDF
Extending the ORM Conceptual Schema Language and Design Procedure with Modeling Constructs for Capturing the Domain Ontology
Chapter 4
Janis Stirna, Anne Persson
This chapter presents experiences and reflections from using the EKD Enterprise Modeling method in a number of European organizations. The EKD... Sample PDF
EKD: An Enterprise Modeling Approach to Support Creativity and Quality in Information Systems and Business Development
Chapter 5
Anders Carstensen, Lennart Holmberg, Kurt Sandkuhl, Janis Stirna
This chapter discusses how an Enterprise Modeling approach, namely C3S3P1, has been applied in an automotive supplier company. The chapter... Sample PDF
Integrated Requirement and Solution Modeling: An Approach Based on Enterprise Models
Chapter 6
John Krogstie, Frank Lillehagen
Innovative design is the most important competitive factor for global engineering and manufacturing. Critical challenges include cutting lead times... Sample PDF
Methodologies for Active Knowledge Modeling
Chapter 7
Peretz Shoval, Mark Last, Avihai Yampolsky
In the analysis phase of the information system development, the user requirements are studied, and analysis models are created. In most UML-based... Sample PDF
Data Modeling and Functional Modeling: Examining the Preferred Order of Using UML Class Diagrams and Use Cases
Chapter 8
Mauri Leppänen
A large number of strategies, approaches, meta models, techniques and procedures have been suggested to support method engineering (ME). Most of... Sample PDF
OntoFrame: An Ontological Framework for Method Engineering
Chapter 9
Patrick van Bommel, Stijn Hoppenbrouwers, Erik Proper, Jeroen Roelofs
A process-oriented framework (QoMo) is presented that aims to further the study of analysis and support of processes for modeling. The framework is... Sample PDF
Concepts and Strategies for Quality of Modeling
Chapter 10
John Erickson, Keng Siau
This chapter presents the basic ideas underlying Service Oriented Architecture as well as a brief overview of current research into the phenomena... Sample PDF
Service Oriented Architecture: A Research Review from the Software and Applications Perspective
Chapter 11
Vítor Estêvão Silva Souza, Ricardo de Almeida Falbo, Giancarlo Guizzardi
In the Web Engineering area, many methods and frameworks to support Web Information Systems (WISs) development have already been proposed.... Sample PDF
Designing Web Information Systems for a Framework-Based Construction
Chapter 12
Tony Elliman, Tally Hatzakis, Alan Serrano
This paper discusses the idea that even though information systems development (ISD) approaches have long advocated the use of integrated... Sample PDF
Business Process Simulation: An Alternative Modelling Technique for the Information System Development Process
Chapter 13
Leandro Dias da Silva, Elthon Allex da Silva Oliveira, Hyggo Almeida, Angelo Perkusich
In this chapter a formal agent based approach for the modeling and verification of intelligent information systems using Coloured Petri Nets is... Sample PDF
An Agent Based Formal Approach for Modeling and Verifying Integrated Intelligent Information Systems
Chapter 14
Jan vom Brocke
With the design of reference models, an increase in the efficiency of information systems engineering is intended. This is expected to be achieved... Sample PDF
Design Principles for Reference Modelling: Reusing Information Models by Means of Aggregation, Specialisation, Instantiation and Analogy
Chapter 15
Eleni Berki
Information systems development methodologies and associated CASE tools have been considered as cornerstones for building quality in an information... Sample PDF
Examining the Quality of Evaluation Frameworks and Metamodeling Paradigms of Information Systems Development Methodologies
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