Modularity and Web Ontologies

Bernardo Cuenca Grau, Bijan Parsia, Evren Sirin, Aditya Kalyanpur

Modularity in ontologies is key both for large scale ontology development and for distributed ontology reuse on the Web. However, the problems of formally characterizing a modular representation, on the one hand, and of automatically identifying modules within an OWL ontology, on the other, has not been satisfactorily addressed, although their relevance has been widely accepted by the Ontology Engineering and Semantic Web communities. In this paper, we provide a notion of modularity grounded on the semantics of OWL-DL. We present an algorithm for automatically identifying and extracting modules from OWL-DL ontologies, an implementation and some promising empirical results on real-world ontologies.

Subjects: 11.2 Ontologies; 11.1 Description Logics

Submitted: Mar 6, 2006

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