Domain Ontologies

Domain Ontologies

Matteo Cristani, Roberta Cuel
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-933-5.ch116
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In conceptual modeling we need to consider a general level of abstraction where the domain of interest is formalized in an independent way with respect to the specific application for which the conceptual modeling process is performed. This leads to an integrated approach that takes into account knowledge about a domain and metaknowledge about a methodology. Indeed, knowledge about a domain is represented by a system of concepts and instances that reify the knowledge that is managed within a domain, and the metaknowledge about a methodology is the description of the knowledge deriving from the method used. For instance, when a technology is used to unveil ontologies within a specific domain, the knowledge about the domain is the resulting ontology, and the metaknowledge about a methodology is the description of the method used to construct the ontology. In this article, a novel method for the creation of both upper level and specific domain ontologies, called the bidirectional method for developing ontologies, is described. In particular, it will guide the developer to obtain ontologies resulting from the combination of both top-down and bottom-up approaches. The first one focuses on conceptual modeling through “armchair” research (philosophical, psychological, sociological aspects) and figures out a formal draft schema. The second approach employs an automatic (or semiautomatic) extraction of categories, taxonomies, partonomies, and dependency graphs in particular from linguistic corpora of documents related to the topics of the domain.

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