Exploring RDF/S Evolution using Provenance Queries

Publication Date: 
Friday, 28 March, 2014
Published in: 
1st International Workshop on Exploratory Search in Databases and the Web, Co-located EDBT/ICDT 2014
Haridimos Kondylakis, Dimitris Plexousakis

The evolution of ontologies is an undisputed necessity in current research community. The problem of understanding this evolution is a fundamental problem as, based on this understanding, maintainers of depending artifacts need to take a decision about possible changes. Moreover, as ontologies are often developed by several ontology engineers, it is also important for them to understand what changes have been made by each other. Recent research focuses on just identifying and presenting the changes from one ontology version to another. In this paper, we argue that this is not enough and that we need more fine-grained methods for understanding how the ontology evolved. To this direction, we present a module, named ProvenanceTracker, which gets as input the list of changes between two or more RDF/S ontology versions and can answer fine-grained provenance queries about ontology resources. Our module can identify when a resource was created and how. The sequence of changes that led to the creation of that specific resource can be identified and presented to the user. We evaluate the time complexity of our approach and show that it can possibly reduce the human effort spent on understanding ontology evolution.

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