Home  Objectives  Partners  Publications

WWW mecca.noc.uth.gr
Ontologies Info
Ontologies Examples
Ontologies Advantages

mecca.noc.uth.gr Enabling TechnologyOntologiesOntologies Advantages  

Ontologies Advantages

The advantage of an ontology is that it represents real world information in a manner that is machine process able. This leads to a variety of interesting applications for the benefit of the target user groups. For example, using the ontology in figure in ontologies examples, we can ask the following questions for information discovery purposes:

  • Give me all courses of the computer science department
  • Give me all courses in year 4
  • Give me all courses of a specific subject area

The above are machine implement able for user friendly results.

The reason ontologies are becoming popular is largely due to what they promise: a shared and common understanding of a domain that can be communicated between people and application systems. Specifically, ontologies offer the following benefits:

  • They assist in the communication between humans. Here, an unambiguous but informal ontology may be sufficient.
  • They achieve interoperability among computer systems achieved by translating between different modelling methods, paradigms, languages and software tools. Here, the ontology is used as an interchange format.
  • They improve the process and/or quality of engineering software systems.

With respect to computer-based modelling, ontologies have the following advantages:

  • Re-Usability: the ontology is the basis for a formal encoding of the important entities, attributes, processes and their inter-relationships in the domain of interest. This formal representation may be a reusable and/or shared component in a software system.
  • Search: an ontology may be used as metadata, serving as an index into a repository of information.
  • Knowledge Acquisition: using an existing ontology as the starting point and basis for guiding knowledge acquisition when building knowledge-based systems may increase speed and reliability.

The development of an ontology is an interdisciplinary research process that involves com-puter scientists as well as experts for the specific area that is addressed. Once an ontology has been created it may be used for information discovery in the following ways:

  • To pose queries for either metadata, concepts or properties of the ontology
  • As a conceptual framework to help the user think about the information repository and formulate queries
  • As a guide to understand the ontology-driven metadata
  • To drive the user interface for creating and refining queries

copyright 2005-2007 MECCA Consortium webmaster