[Crm-sig] RDFS, XML and more
martin at ics.forth.gr
Fri Sep 10 18:32:47 EEST 2021
I'd also like to point you to a subtle distinction which is very
important for us:
Mark correctly states:
"If you declare rdfs:label a subproperty of P1 you are changing in fact
the definition of rdfs:label and the definition of E41. This means you
simply change the data on nearly the whole world without even having a
glance at a single dataset."
This is the mathematical, model-theoretic point of view about what a
In contrast, we commit to Nicola Guarinos formulation, that the logical
declarations of a formal ontology are an approximation of a
conceptualization (rather than being it), trying to minimize "unintended
Therefore, there exist textual *definitions* for all constructs of
formal ontologies, in order to render the intended models. This is the
ontological (philosophical, cognitive) point of view of what a
The CRM states for E41 Appellation:
"This class comprises signs, either meaningful or not, or arrangements
of signs following a specific syntax, that are used or can be used to
refer to and identify a specific instance of some class or category
within a certain context."
RDFS 1.1 states for rdfs:label:
"|rdfs:label| is an instance of |rdf:Property| that may be used to
provide a human-readable version of a resource's name."
According to that, E41 constitutes a generalization of all *adequate
uses* of rdfs:label, and indeed is intended to be so for all possible
worlds. Methodologically, for CRM-SIG, the intended meaning has priority
over preserving the formal definition in the sense Mark mentioned. This
principle is also behind the formulation of the "conservative extension"
in the CRM introduction.
Further, I want to express our particular gratitude to Mark Fichtner for
creating the OWL implementations of the CRM and his careful semantic
checking, which has been helping us a lot. When I mentioned automatic
generation, I rather spoke about a utility making work easier, not a
mechanism replacing manual scrutiny.
Finally, I would like to confirm, that no more constructs of this kind
are intended, that it is not intended to introduce a new practice of
this kind (please do not generalize and panick😂), and that indeed the
rdfs:label problem and identifiers play an exceptional role in the
ontology - schema transition.
All the best,
Dr. Martin Doerr
Honorary Head of the
Center for Cultural Informatics
Information Systems Laboratory
Institute of Computer Science
Foundation for Research and Technology - Hellas (FORTH)
N.Plastira 100, Vassilika Vouton,
Email: martin at ics.forth.gr
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