Ontolog Forum

Session Communiqué Workshop
Duration 1 hour
Date/Time 02 Jun 2021 16:00 GMT
9:00am PDT/12:00pm EDT
5:00pm BST/6:00pm CEST
Convener KenBaclawski

Ontology Summit 2021 Communiqué Workshop

Ontologies are a rich and versatile construct. They can be extracted, learned, modularized, interrelated, transformed, analyzed, and harmonized as well as developed in a formal process. This summit will explore the many kinds of ontologies and how they can be manipulated. The goal is to acquaint both current and potential users of ontologies with the possibilities for how ontologies could be used for solving problems.


Conference Call Information

  • Date: Wednesday, 02 Jun 2021
  • Start Time: 9:00am PDT / 12:00pm EDT / 6:00pm CEST / 5:00pm BST / 1600 UTC
  • Expected Call Duration: 1 hour
  • The Video Conference URL is
    • iPhone one-tap :
      • +16465588656,,83077436914#,,,,,,0#,,822275# US (New York)
      • +13017158592,,83077436914#,,,,,,0#,,822275# US (Germantown)
    • Telephone:
  • Chat Room:
    • If the chat room is not available, then use the Zoom chat room.



[12:03] ToddSchneider: Here's one phrase we may want to use, "Ontology is in the eye of the beholder".

[12:12] Gary Berg-Cross: Michael Uschold also talked about ontological style.

[12:21] Gary Berg-Cross: Summit discussions of Logic include the OntologySummit 2007 Communique

  • Formal upper-level ontologies expressed in first order logic (e.g., complex semantics, cf. propositional logic,

[12:22] Gary Berg-Cross: The OntologySummit2010 on Future Quality Synthesis also had a discussion of

  1. Logic (first order, second order, Description Logic, ...; logic of definitions)
  2. Representation languages Part 1: RDF, OWL; Common Logic

[12:23] Gary Berg-Cross: An ontological commitment comes from Quine on the existence of things made in a language is one or more objects postulated to exist by that language.

[12:31] ToddSchneider: Add a bit in Landscape about understanding the confusion (conflation?) among natural language terms and phrases used to identify elements in an ontology and the fact that these terms and phrases are 'symbols' (in an underlying logical signature, subject to interpretation) in a formal representation.

[12:32] ToddSchneider: In line 98, "Accordingly, definitions can serve as links between formal ontologies and informal ontologies ...", need to add something about the 'linking' of natural language definitions and formal/logical definitions.

[12:37] Gary Berg-Cross: EnvO appears is both both forms. I prefer what you read at About EnvO

[12:45] Gary Berg-Cross: The ontologies we are most familiar with are symbolic structures (architectures). we now have knowledge bases that come from sub-symbolic systems.

[12:49] Gary Berg-Cross: Sustainability issues should include a mention of the new challenges raised by symbolic/sub-symbolic systems.

[12:52] Gary Berg-Cross: We don't discuss interoperability in this draft. We should add something.

[12:53] Gary Berg-Cross: Here is some draft text - Well defined concepts are an essential ingredient in communication and plays a central role in semantic interoperability. Both are about a common understanding of concepts, services, information and contributing data. Some of this was discussed at the initial, 2007, Ontology Summit topic on Ontology, taxonomy, & folksonomy: Understanding the distinctions. Understanding the distinctions discussed the spectrum of useful semantic artifacts starting with an implicit preference for strong formality found in ontologies. But a range of resources exist such as folksonomies (such as simple user-defined keywords lists useful to annotate resources on the Web) along with taxonomies, conceptual models and what are considered weak semantic resources of controlled vocabularies such as Medical Subject Headings (MeSH). Vocabularies like MeSH reflect association of terms and are part of language use which, like a model, impose some simplifying, constraining and organizing form on the fluxing complexity we call reality about which we communicate. The impetus in these early days was on formalizing concepts in an logical language in an ontology, to allow some degree of automated, interoperable processing of data, for example, definitions should be represented in a formal, logical language. Less attention was devoted to standardization of other forms of semantic resources in pre-formalization phases. Now, there is a greater recognition and appreciation of not just formal ontologies but also for the value of standard vocabularies to support research communication, data sharing and interoperability. In an effort to control the meaning of terms/vocabularies (such as linked data) take on a lifecycle of their own like other digital data lifecycles.

[12:54] Gary Berg-Cross: Some input on Sustainability and Management As research methodology and scope have expanded with technological advances, the management of ontologies and other related semantic resources has become a critical and distinct component of the ontology lifecycle. The scale and diversity of new semantic resources such as knowledge graphs, neurosymbolic-generated products and domain vocabularies required a reexamination of the ontological engineering practices, the various roles involved in the semantic research enterprise.


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