Motivations for Ontology
Ontologies are playing an increasing role in
AI and CS, e.g. to represent word senses for machine translation,
product catalogs for electronic commerce, and materials properties or
CAD geometries for engineering applications.
Here, we concentrate on ontologies that are used
for modeling enterprise aspects,
e.g. for intra/inter-enterprise knowledge and data
access, integration, and sharing.
There is also an increasing number of activities
focused on ontologies, of which we mention two `hot' examples.
USA: Meeting Technical Committee T2, Information Interchange and Interpretation, Pennsylvania, May 13-15, 1998:
Discussion of the new international (ISO/IEC) organization for data
management and interchange (including standards for information technology
for database, conceptual modelling, ontology development, meta
data/repository/registry, and EDI support).
EU: INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON FORMAL ONTOLOGY IN INFORMATION SYSTEMS (FOIS'98), TRENTO, ITALY, JUNE 6-8, 1998:
Research on ontology is becoming increasingly widespread in the
computer science community. Its importance has been recognized in
fields as diverse as qualitative modelling of physical systems,
natural language processing, knowledge engineering, information
integration, database design, geographic information science, and
intelligent information access. Insights in this field have potential
impacts on the whole area of information systems. In order to provide
a solid general foundation for this work, it is therefore important to
focus on the common scientific principles and open problems arising
from current tools, methodologies, and applications of ontology.