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   Re: [xml-dev] SemWeb again

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Mike Champion wrote:

> As best I understand it, this would be extremely tedious/challenging to
address with
> SQL or XPath, because the clinical data don't specify "tumors that have
the P53 mutation",
> they describe things like ?glioblastoma.?  One then needs to use SNOMED to
> that a glioblastoma is a type of astrocytoma (I?m guessing a lot here;
forgive me
> if I?ve gotten the details wrong, but it?s a GREAT use case!), and then
some other
> knowledge base to add the bit of information that astrocytomas are
characterized by the
> P53 mutation.   So, I agree: this is not pie in the sky stuff, this is
> ?real? medical knowledge, encoding it using XML and/or SemWeb
technologies, and
> performing queries/inferences to answer imporant questions.
> A few questions:
> How close is anyone to actually building a system that contains enough of
> the various other bits of knowledge so as to be truly useful to a

there are deployed systems that use SNOMED, but (IMHO) much remains to be

> Help me understand the value that RDF and DAML+OIL add to the ?raw?
> SNOMED data.

Think of DAML+OIL / WebOnt as a language for encoding SNOMED. Particularly a
language that allows the encoding to be put on the web and one that allows
bits of ontologies written by different groups using different tools to be
integrated together -- the tools _already_ emit DAML+OIL.

> This sounds like a very interesting challenge for RDBMS experts; I would
guess that
> it is too hard for a practical RDBMS-based application, but not being an
> I would not want to assume that.  Has this class of problems been studied,
> no practical solution using relatively well-understood technologies been

Description Logic is reasonably well understood -- though admittedly not
mainstream. But your analysis is essentially correct -- just try doing
something like this with a simple SQL query.

> ...Can you imagine this being handled with
> XQuery? Can any XPath2/XQuery experts offer an opinion as to whether this
kind of
> query (sortof a recursive join across three XML collections???)
> is within their requirements or use cases?

Depending on how things go, and certainly if I get my druthers, there might
be a tight fit between XQuery and the WebOnt language -- I should note that
the WebOnt WG archives are open to the public so you can see what everyone
is thinking :-) http://www.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-webont-wg also
http://www.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-webont-comments if y'all have
'features' that you think would be useful. More on this whole topic later.



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