The Info Service Ontology 0.6

Namespace Document 12 July 2010

This version:
http://purl.org/ontology/is/20100712/infoservice.html (OWL, N3)
Latest version:
http://purl.org/ontology/is/core# (OWL, N3)
Previous version:
http://purl.org/ontology/is/20100630/infoservice.html (OWL, N3)
Authors:
Bob Ferris (SMI)
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Valid XHTML + RDFa Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License. This copyright applies to the Info Service Ontology Specification and accompanying documentation in RDF. Regarding underlying technology, the Info Service Ontology uses W3C's RDF technology, an open Web standard that can be freely used by anyone.


Abstract

The Information Service Ontology Specification provides basic concepts and properties for describing different information services, e.g. Wikipedia, MusicBrainz, Freebase or Discogs, on/ for the Semantic Web. This document contains a RDFa description of the Information Service Ontology.

Status of This Document

The template of this specification is derived from the FOAF Vocabulary Specification, which was created by Dan Brickley and Libby Miller, and the Music Ontology Specification, which was created by Yves Raimond. It was modified and extended by Bob Ferris. Furthermore, a modified and extended version of Danbri's SpecGen version was used to generate most of the RDFa statements of the Info Service Ontology for this specification (see here for SpecGen version 6 by Bob Ferris).

This document is created by combining the RDFS/OWL machine-readable Info Service Ontology with a human-readable HTML representation that includes RDFa annotations. Future versions may incorporate multilingual translations of term definitions. The RDF/XML version of the specification is also available directly from the namespace URI. RDF/N3 representations could be access via the links above.

The authors welcome comments on this document, preferably via the Info Service Ontology Specification Group mailing list or the Info Service Ontology blog.

Table of Contents

The Info Service Ontology at a glance

The is:InfoService concept as graph with relations:

The info service concept as graph with relations

An a-z index of Info Service Ontology terms, by class (categories or types) and by property.

Classes: | InfoService | InfoServiceContributorType | InfoServiceQuality | InfoServiceType |

Properties: | info_service | info_service_contributor_type | info_service_quality | info_service_type | main_subject |

Example

RDF/Turtle representation of a webpage linked to an Information Service:

@prefix foaf:    <http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/> .
@prefix is:      <http://purl.org/ontology/is/core#> .
@prefix isi:     <http://purl.org/ontology/is/inst/> .
 
isi:musicbrainz a is:InfoService .
 
<http://musicbrainz.org/artist/8a1fe33d-6029-462e-bcb7-08e0ebaba6dd.html>
   a foaf:Document ;
   is:info_service isi:musicbrainz .

The initial intention behind designing this ontology was to add some knowledge re. linked websites from different information services, e.g. Wikipedia or MusicBrainz, in semantic graphs (as proposed in the FOAF wiki). This is shown in the example above for a document taken from MusicBrainz.

A graphic of MusicBrainz modelled as Information Service:

The Info Service Ontology - MusicBrainz example

RDF/Turtle representation of MusicBrainz modelled as Information Service (see also RDF and N3 for downloadable representations of this example):

@prefix dc:      <http://purl.org/dc/elements/1.1/> .
@prefix dcterms: <http://purl.org/dc/terms/> .
@prefix foaf:    <http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/> .
@prefix is:      <http://purl.org/ontology/is/core#> .
@prefix ist:     <http://purl.org/ontology/is/types/> .
@prefix isct:    <http://purl.org/ontology/is/ctypes/> .
@prefix isq:     <http://purl.org/ontology/is/quality/> .
@prefix isi:     <http://purl.org/ontology/is/inst/> .
@prefix rdf:     <http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#> .
@prefix rdfs:    <http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#> .
@prefix xsd:     <http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema#> .
 
isi:musicbrainz
   rdf:type is:InfoService ;
   rdfs:isDefinedBy isi: ;
   dc:description "An open content music database. Modelled here as information service."@en ;
   dc:title "MusicBrainz"^^xsd:string ;
   dcterms:subject <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:Metadata_registry> , 
      <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:Acoustic_fingerprinting> , 
      <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:MusicBrainz> , 
      <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:Library_2.0> , 
      <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:Online_encyclopedias> , 
      <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:Online_music_and_lyrics_databases> , 
      <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:Free_websites> ;
   is:info_service_contributor_type
      isct:mixed ;
   is:info_service_quality
      isq:good ;
   is:info_service_type
      ist:encyclopedia , ist:knowledge_base ;
   is:main_subject <http://dbpedia.org/resource/Category:Music> ;
   foaf:homepage <http://musicbrainz.org/> .

This is an is:InfoService individual for MusicBrainz as proof-of-concept example. Therefore, I used also some category definitions from DBpedia (important is also the property is:main_subject for associating a main subject of an Information Service).

Introduction: Info Service Ontology Basics

Info Service Ontology Namespaces, Domains and Prefixes

For representing the different issues of the Info Service Ontology, it was necessary to assign several namespaces/domains, which are the following ones:

Please use them as intended ;)

What's the Info Service Ontology for?

TODO

Background

What is an Information Service?

A very simple definition is:

An Information Service is a service, which provides (serves) data/knowledge/information somehow.

However, this definition is not strong enough to describe the range and domain of an Information Service. Therefore, it is necessary to define the term Information Service in a specific context. Fortunately, Wikipedia delivers, or better saying serves, a good definition of this context, which is called Information System.

An Information System is any combination of information technology and people's activities using that technology to support operations, management, and decision-making.

The definition continues with explaining the term from a bit more technical view:

In a very broad sense, the term Information System is frequently used to refer to the interaction between people, algorithmic processes, data and technology.

Regarding the first part of this definition, an Information Service is an instance of Information Technology. Hence, an Information Service is a part of an Information System. The second role in this definition is people. This term must be substituted by the term agent, which could be an administrator and/or an user. An user could be a customer and/or contributor. In addition, an agent could be a human or a machine. The interaction is that an Information Service, which collects (retrieves), manages (structures) and stores the data/knowledge/information (maybe with the help of an administrator), serves this data/knowledge/information to an user. The outcome of this, is the following definition:

An Information Service is this part of an Information System that serves data/knowledge/information* to customers and collects it from its contributors, to manage and store it by optionally using administrators.

This should be a technology independent** definition of the term Information Service. That means an Information Service could be

independently of its representation form and/or carrier/transmission medium/form, e.g. a book (paper) or the Internet.
Although, the term Information Service could cover a broad range of things, the usage of it might concentrates for the beginning on the Internet and there especially on the Web, with a focus on Information Services, which have/deliver a huge amount of data/knowledge/information (of a specific domain or domain independent)****. Hence, one could say: "let's define the term Web Information Service as a subset and a specific kind of Information Service" (cf. definition of Web Information System). However, since the Web delivers only another kind of carrier/transmission medium/form, it should be enough to say that an Information Service simply uses this carrier/transmission medium/form next to other carrier/transmission mediums/forms.

PS: This definition is based on the community/expert power of Wikipedia and a good discussion with Olaf Hartig.

*) knowledge is all meaning of data, and information is a subset of knowledge to a concrete question or domain (see Information definition on Wikipedia).

**) That means, it includes non-computer (sometimes also referred as offline***) related things, e.g. a book or a library, and computer (sometimes also referred as online***) related things, e.g. a website.

***) Although, the terms offline and online should be in general used for computer related things. They express whether data/knowledge/information is available via Internet (online) or not (offline).

****) However, the society tends more and more into the Long Tail. Hence, it might be interesting to describe and rate also all these very subjective Information Services, e.g. a personal blog or website. It depends all on the subjective mutual trust each Information Service consumer has to the specific Information Services. Its at least a mutual trust between consumers and producers of an Information Service.

The Info Service Ontology and Standards

TODO

TODO

The Info Service Ontology Description

This specification serves as the Info Service Ontology "namespace document". As such it describes the Info Service Ontology and the terms (RDF classes and properties) that constitute it, so that Semantic Web applications can use those terms in a variety of RDF-compatible document formats and applications.

This document presents the Info Service Ontology as a Semantic Web vocabulary or Ontology. The Info Service Ontology is pretty simple, pragmatic and designed to allow simultaneous deployment and extension. The Info Service Ontology is intended for widescale use, but its authors make no commitments regarding its suitability for any particular purpose.

Evolution and Extension of the Info Service Ontology

The Info Service Ontology vocabulary is identified by the namespace URI 'http://purl.org/ontology/is/core#'. Revisions and extensions of the Info Service Ontology are conducted through edits to this document, which by convention is accessible in the Web via the namespace URI. For practical and deployment reasons, note that we do not update the namespace URI as the vocabulary matures.

The evolution of the Info Service Ontology is best considered in terms of the stability of individual vocabulary terms, rather than the specification as a whole. As terms stabilise in usage and documentation, they progress through the categories 'unstable', 'testing' and 'stable'. Older terms are marked 'archaic' which allows the possibility of older forms to become modern again.

The Info Service Ontology cross-reference: Listing the Info Service Ontology Classes and Properties

The Info Service Ontology introduces the following classes and properties. There is a link at the top of this document to the RDF/XML and RDF/N3 versions.

Classes: | InfoService | InfoServiceContributorType | InfoServiceQuality | InfoServiceType |

Properties: | info_service | info_service_contributor_type | info_service_quality | info_service_type | main_subject |

Classes and Properties (full detail)


Classes

Class: is:InfoServiceContributorType

Information Service Contributor Type - This concept is for describing the different contributor types of information services, e.g. expert, \ncommunity or mixed. Please feel free to define further information service contributor types.\nPlease use therefore the namespace "http://purl.org/ontology/is/ctypes/".
Status: testing
Used with: info_service_contributor_type
Sub class of owl:Thing
OWL Class
RDFS Class

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Class: is:InfoServiceQuality

Information Service Quality - This concept is for describing specific quality levels or ratings, e.g. good or bad or more detailed ones, of \ninformation services. Please feel free to use this concept as hook for more complex and detailed information service quality description \nmodellings in sub ontologies. Please use therefore the domain "http://purl.org/ontology/is/quality/".Futhermore, such information \nservice ratings could be done by different information service rating agencies, so that the customer of such ratings could select \nits information service ratings agency of choice.
Status: testing
Used with: info_service_quality
Sub class of owl:Thing
OWL Class
RDFS Class

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Class: is:InfoServiceType

Information Service Type - This concept is for describing the type of an information service, e.g. 'social network service', \n'recommender service' or 'encyclopedia'. Please feel free to define further information service types for categorization.\nPlease use therefore the namespace "http://purl.org/ontology/is/types/".
Status: testing
Used with: info_service_type
Sub class of owl:Thing
OWL Class
RDFS Class

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Class: is:InfoService

Information Service - Extended definition:\n\n\t"An Information Service is this part of an Information System that serves data/knowledge/information to customers and collects it \n\tfrom its contributors, to manage and store it by optionally using administrators."\n\nPlease refer also this article[1] about the definition of the term 'Information Service'.\n\nThis concept is for linking a piece of information of a specific concept instance (or at least website links or other data representations \nof this concept instance), e.g. a foaf:Agent, a mo:Track or a mo:MusicArtist to a related website of a specific information service (modelled \nas individual of is:InfoService), e.g. Wikipedia, MySpace, MusicBrainz, Discogs, Last.fm, Pandora, BBC, ... . With this concept it is possible \nto describe the underlying information services of that knowledge representation more in detail, so that the client, which consumes that \n'linked data' could choose, which source it likes to use by evaluating the description of the information service of that website link or \nother data representation.\nPlease use for further is:InfoService instances the namespace "http://purl.org/ontology/is/inst/".\n\n\n[1] https://infoserviceonto.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/what-is-an-information-service/
Status: unstable
Properties include: info_service_contributor_type info_service_quality main_subject info_service_type
Used with: info_service
Sub class of owl:Thing
OWL Class
RDFS Class

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Properties

Property: is:info_service_contributor_type

has info service contributor type - With this property it is possible to associate a specific information service contributor type, e.g. expert, \ncommunity or mixed, to an is:InfoService instance.
Status: testing
Domain: Information Service
Range: Information Service Contributor Type
Inverse property of the anonymous defined property with the label 'is info service contributor type of' (Object Property, RDF Property)
RDF Property
Object Property

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Property: is:info_service_quality

has info service quality - With this property it is possible to associate a specific quality level or information service rating\nto an is:InfoService instance
Status: testing
Domain: Information Service
Range: Information Service Quality
Inverse property of the anonymous defined property with the label 'is info service quality of' (Object Property, RDF Property)
RDF Property
Object Property

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Property: is:info_service_type

has info service type - With this property it is possible to associate a specific information service type, e.g. 'social network service', \n'recommender service' or 'encyclopedia', to an is:InfoService instance. This property could be used multiple times that means an \nis:InfoService instance could be for example of the information service type 'social network site' and 'recommender system'.
Status: testing
Domain: Information Service
Range: Information Service Type
Inverse property of the anonymous defined property with the label 'is info service type of' (Object Property, RDF Property)
RDF Property
Object Property

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Property: is:main_subject

has main subject - This property is for defining the main subject of an is:InfoService instance that means this \ninfo service address mainly this concern.
Status: testing
Domain: Information Service
Sub property of dcterms:subject
Inverse property of the anonymous defined property with the label 'is main subject of' (Object Property, RDF Property)
RDF Property
Object Property

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Property: is:info_service

has info service - This property could be used to associate a semantic graph description or especially\na website link, e.g. typed as foaf:Document, to the specific is:InfoService individual. This enables the consumer of this resource\nto retrieve more information (descriptions, ratings) about the underlying information service of this resource.
Status: unstable
Range: Information Service
Inverse property of the anonymous defined property with the label 'is info service of' (Object Property, RDF Property)
RDF Property
Object Property

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External Vocabulary References

The description of the terms in the Info Service Ontology 'dictionary' make reference to classes and properties elsewhere. This section of the Info Service Ontology specification provides a placeholder reference for any Info Service Ontology mention of externally defined terms. For example, sometimes we might say that Info Service Ontology property has a domain or range of an externally defined class, or that a Info Service Ontology class is a sub-class of an external class, or 'disjoint with' such a class (ie. has no common members). Such claims help fix the intended meaning of Info Service Ontology terms in relationship to other 'peer' vocabularies. Currently, the Info Service Ontology sub classes:

owl:Thing
The class extension of owl:Thing is the set of all individuals.

Status Vocabulary

Each term in the Info Service Ontology is annotated with properties from the SemWeb Vocab Status Ontology

Note that this mechanism is itself somewhat experimental and evolvin. The definitions of 'stable', 'unstable', 'archaic' and 'testing' cannot be defined as global absolutes, but only in relationship to the practices, expectations and social structures around some vocabulary. For their use in the Info Service Ontology, future versions of this specification could usefully offer more detail about what to expect from a term labelled 'stable'.

vs:term_status
The vs:term_status property indicates the status of a vocabulary term, one of 'stable','unstable','testing' or 'archaic'.

Acknowledgments

I would like to thank very much Olaf Hartig (!) and Mats Skillingstad to help to establish this multiple purpose Information Service ontology. Furthermore, Dan Brickley and Libby Miller to provide the basis for this specification.

Recent Changes

=========================
Version 0.6 (July 2010)
=========================
 * MODIFIED: all concepts now also with rdfs:Class typed
 * MODIFIED: all properties now also with rdf:Property typed
 * REMOVED: FOAF from imports

=========================
Version 0.5.1 (June 2010)
=========================
 * FIXED: bad typo of owl:inverseOf
 
=========================
Version 0.5 (June 2010)
=========================
 * MODIFIED: removed domain restriction from is:info_service
 * MODIFIED: changed base URI to http://purl.org/ontology/is/core#
 * ADDED: infoservicetypes.n3 - to outsource the is:InfoServiceType individuals.
 * ADDED: ../examples/infoservicecontributortypes.n3 - to outsource the is:InfoServiceContributorType individuals.
 * ADDED: ../examples/infoserviceindividuals.n3 - to outsource the is:InfoService individuals.
 * ADDED: ../examples/infoservicequalitytypes.n3 - to outsource the is:InfoServiceQuality examples.
 * ADDED: ../examples/infoservicetypes.n3 - to outsource the is:InfoService examples.
 * ADDED: info service type namespace - http://purl.org/ontology/is/types/.
 * ADDED: info service contributor type namespace - http://purl.org/ontology/is/ctypes/.
 * ADDED: info service quality namespace - http://purl.org/ontology/is/quality/.
 * ADDED: info service instances namespace - http://purl.org/ontology/is/inst/.

=========================
Version 0.4.2 (June 2010)
=========================
 * MODIFIED: dc:date uses now xsd:dateTime as datatype
 * MODFIED: foaf:maker to dc:creator

=========================
Version 0.4.1 (June 2010)
=========================
 * MODIFIED: xsd:string typed literals to @en (mainly)
 * FIXED: minor typo fixes
 * FIXED: dcterms:subject and is:main_subject categories as URIs and not as strings

=========================
Version 0.4 (June 2010)
=========================
 * MODIFIED: is:InfoServiceType to is:InfoServiceContributorType, because this concept address the issue of info service contributor type modelling
 * MODIFIED: is:info_service_type to is:info_service_contributor_type, because this is the related property for info service contributor type relations
 * ADDED: is:InfoServiceType, describing info service types, e.g. 'encyclopedia' or 'social network service'
 * ADDED: is:info_service_type, the related property for info service type relations
 * ADDED: is:main_subject for associating a main subject to an info service
 * ADDED: some is:InfoService and is:InfoServiceType individuals

=========================
Version 0.3 (June 2010)
=========================
 * MODIFIED: is:info_service domain to owl:Thing
 * MODIFIED: some concept descriptions for clarification

=========================
Version 0.2 (June 2010)
=========================
 * ADDED: is:InfoServiceQuality
 * ADDED: is:InfoServiceType
 * ADDED: is:info_service_quality
 * ADDED: is:info_service_type
 * ADDED: some is:InfoServiceQuality and is:InfoServiceType individuals
 * MODIFIED: is:musicbrainz with new properties
 
=========================
Version 0.1 (June 2010)
=========================
 * ADDED: is:InfoService
 * ADDED: is:info_service
 * ADDED: some is:InfoService individuals