[tdwg-content] assertions in DwC terms

Hilmar Lapp hlapp at duke.edu
Sat Jun 6 02:31:06 CEST 2009

The current DwC Terms version (at http://rs.tdwg.org/dwc/rdf/dwcterms.rdf) 
  defines the domain for (at least some) object properties.

Unless I am missing something this means that when I use DwC Terms for  
properties I implicitly assert the class of the subject, which means  
that either I can use DwC terms only for subjects of the type they are  
intended for (and why would one want to limit DwC's use in this way?),  
or reasoning based on RDF or OWL extractions of leads to problems.

For example, in the Phenoscape project [1] we would like to link  
characters, states, or OTUs to the specimens based on which a  
systematist defined a (or all) character(s) or state(s). The specimens  
would be described in a NeXML document [2] with embedded RDFa  
annotation by institutionCode, collectionCode, and catalogNumber. The  
RDF extracted from that when run in a reasoner (which we will do)  
would implicitly assert that the specimen is a DwCTerms:Occurrence.  
Right now that probably doesn't hurt much in this case, but it might  
in the future, and I'm not sure what is gained from forcing those  
implicit assertions in the vocabulary.

Should I post this as an issue to the tracker on Google Code, too?


[1] http://phenoscape.org
[2] http://nexml.org

: Hilmar Lapp  -:-  Durham, NC  -:- hlapp at duke dot edu :

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