OverviewThis first general textbook An introduction to ontology engineering has as main aim to provide the reader with a comprehensive introductory overview of ontology engineering. A secondary aim is to provide hands-on experience in ontology development that illustrate the theory.
The book is divided into three blocks:
- Block I: logic foundations for ontologies both regarding the languages (mainly First Order predicate Logic, Description Logics, and OWL) and automated reasoning.
- Block II: developing good ontologies with methods and methodologies, the top-down approach with foundational ontologies, and the bottom-up approach to extract as much useful content as possible from legacy material.
- Block III: advanced topics with a selection of areas of specialisation, including Ontology-Based Data Access, the interaction between ontologies and natural languages (multilingual ontologies, controlled natural language) advanced modelling with additional language features (fuzzy and temporal ontologies), and ontology modularisation (new in v1.5).
The textbook is principally aimed at advanced undergraduate/postgradute level in computer science and could fit a semester course in ontology engineering or a 2-week (very/perhaps too) intensive crash course. Domain experts and philosophers may find a subset of the chapters of interest, or work through the chapters in a different order.
2021 UCT Open Textbook Award for the OE textbook
- The announcement of the award by DVC Teaching & Learning Prof Lis Lange
- A brief interview in the UCT News about the textbook and the award
Also available in paperback, published by the non-profit College Publications. It is available from Amazon.com, .co.uk, .de, .es and many others
Exercises and tutorialsThe exercises are described in the book. It refers to several ontologies, other files, and tools specifically, which are listed here with links to the appropriate sources, in the order that you would come across it in the book.
Supplementary materials for the exercises
- Several ontologies are used in the exercises, they are available here in this folder
- A description of the AWO tutorial ontologies, or if you want to use them and cite them, please consult/use:
Keet, C.M. The African Wildlife Ontology tutorial ontologies. Journal of Biomedical Semantics, 2020, 11:4.
- More exercises to formalise knowledge, with sample answers for FOL and DL (included in v1.5)
- The Pizza ontology OOPS! outputs (zip file)
- The OntoClean example by Guarino and Welty (the one described in their paper), carried out in multiple steps
- A tutorial that uses OntoClean with OWL and the DL reasoner, which uses OntOWLClean and has a different 'dirty' taxonomy to clean up (included in v1.5)
- The OBDA tutorial about elephants in the Kruger Park
- The Ontology verbalisers (categorised) with their references, compiled by Zola Mahlaza
- A sample exam is available upon request
Tools and pluginsSeveral in-house developed tools are used in the exercises:
- Logics support
- DL axiom renderer - DL notation in Protégé
- OWL Classifier - detects OWL species and violations
- Methods for ontology authoring
- TDDonto2 - authoring support in Protégé
- CLaRO - competency question authoring
- ONSET - foundational ontology selection
- ROMULUS - foundational ontology repository
- BFO Classifier - align an ontology to BFO v2.0
- OntoPartS - select part-whole relations
- TOMM - compute module metrics
- NOMSA - modularise an ontology
- Natural language tools
- isiZulu verbaliser
- Afrikaans verbaliser
- ODE localiser - Protégé and Manchester syntax in Afrikaans and Spanish
- Ontology editors: Protégé
- Ontology repositories: BioPortal, OntoHub, and ODPs
- Methods with tools: OOPS! ontology pitfall scanner
- Tools for working with OWL files: OWL API, OWLlink, Owlready, and Apache jena
- OBDA system: Ontop
SlidesThe ones used in 2019 are now available in pdf, latex source, and ppt (automated conversion + post-processing). However, note that some of the material lends itself well, or even better, for scribbling on the board rather than static pretty pictures on slides (especially in the FOL, DL and OWL sections). When I have more time, I may make more neat figures; the figures that I did not make are referenced in the tex source file or in the 'notes' section of the ppt file.
You can freely reuse and remix them, under a CC-BY licence.
- Administrivia and general information; pdf
- Introduction; pdf - latex (zip) - pptx
- FOL; pdf - latex (zip) - pptx
- DL; pdf - latex (zip) - pptx
- OWL etc; pdf - latex (zip) - pptx, and the reasoner example with Schrodinger's cat: pp23-43 of SWModLang-ESSLLI09-2.pdf
- Methods and methodologies; pdf - latex (zip) - ppt
- Top-down, part I (foundational ontologies); pdf - latex (zip) - ppt
- Top-down, part II (part-whole relations, ODPs); pdf - latex (zip) - ppt
- Bottom-up; pdf - latex (zip) - ppt, and the SKOS slides
- Multilingual Ontologies and ontology verbalisation; pdf - latex (zip) - ppt
- Guest lecture by Zubeida Khan on ontology modularisation; pdf - ppt
ElsewhereThe book is also available in various institutional repositories, such as OpenUCT and the Open Textbook Archive, and people in charge of other archives and indexes have added it to other archives as well, including, but not limited to unglue.it (featured in the week of 13-8-2018), Open Libra, and the EBooks Directory. LibreText has been converting the textbook into HTML.
It was also posted on Reddit and I announced it on my blog.
The OE book or its predecessor lecture notes and/or the slides based on it [is being/was/has been/will be] used in whole or in part in the following courses/at the following universities (in alphabetical order):
- Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy
- National Institute of Technology Patna, India
- Tshwane University of Technology, South Africa
- Umeå University, Sweden
- Universidad de las Ciencias Informáticas, Cuba
- Universität Leipzig, Germany
- University of Cape Town, South Africa
- University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
- University of Swansea, UK
- [to be updated]
(If you use it and would like it to be listed here, please contact me.)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.