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Team Comment on Web Service Modeling Ontology (WSMO) Submission

W3C is pleased to receive the Web Service Modeling Ontology (WSMO) Submission from DERI Innsbruck at the Leopold-Franzens-Universitšt Innsbruck, Austria, DERI Galway at the National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland, BT, The Open University, and SAP AG.

This submission proposes a set of documents describing an ontology model, language and API for services. The overall design relies on a simple Class/Sub-Class/Attributes/Types of attributes data model. Three key concepts appears along the documents: ontology, goal, and mediator.

We would like to see more background for the whole piece of work, by means of real use cases for example, to describe the problems that this framework is trying to solve. There is only little justification of the technical choices all along the documents.

The document only gives little detail about mediators, which seem to be the essential contribution in the submission. The WSMO document describe mediators as a mean to "resolve mismatches between different used terminologies (data level), in how to communicate between Web services (protocol level) and on the level of combining Web services (and goals) (process level)". We would like to see which approach is used and which kind of mismatches it covers, especially at the process level, since current recommendations already give solutions to guarantee interoperability in the Web services domain.


Even if it claims that it "supports XML and other W3C Web technology recommendations", the submission is not based on W3C recommendations in the Semantic Web area, such as OWL and RDF.

The Abstract also makes the promise of complementing existing Web services technologies "by providing a conceptual model and language for the semantic markup describing all relevant aspects of general services which are accessible through a web service interface". However, from the Web services point of view, it has very little connections to technologies in development in the Web services stack. In that matter, the notion of choreography in WSMO is obviously very far from the definition and scope presented in WS-CDL. There is also no connection to any description language at lower level, like WSDL.

Next step

The submission represents a development, but one which has been done in isolation of the W3C standards. It does not use the RDFS concepts of Class and Property for its ontology, and does not connect to the WSDL definitions of services, or other parts of the Web Services Architecture. These differences are not clearly explained or justified, and work would be needed to describe the work here using RDF terminology and connect it with existing work.

Authors: Carine Bournez