A science ontology version 2

Michael, Silver, Paul and myself have had another go at a science ontology. We’ve tried to take onboard the comments from the previous version – many thanks to those that commented.

Simple ontology to model the scientific process
Second attempt at a science ontology

A few things worth highlighting:

The previous version contained included “Observation” defined as “an observed phenomena in the natural world cf “data” an observation resulting from an experiment.” While I still think the concept is valid (people observe things in the natural world and wonder why its like that) the term caused confusion – it wasn’t clear that that sort of observation was different from experimental observations. So now have two concepts:

  1. Noticings – which replaces the previous “Observations” i.e. is an observed phenomena in the natural world;
  2. Observations – which are experimental observations.

We added in “equipment” and “method” to experiment – this allows us to have URIs for things like the LHC and the Hubble Space Telescope which is handy.

We’ve expanded out the agent role a bit to include “Collaborations” which hopefully allows for the modeling of research projects such as the LHC, the Human Genome Project and the like.

And finally we’ve fleshed out the paper, peer review stuff.

What do you think?

2 responses to “A science ontology version 2”

  1. Very much improved. Some quick observations:

    Papers can be published in more than just journals (conferences being one obvious example). They can also cite more than papers: theses, books, websites, technical reports, etc. This may be too much of a can of worms to get into, perhaps just change it to publication and leave the taxonomy of publications to another ontology.

    I am not sure that there is any difference between a noticing and an observation (except using noticing as a noun makes me want to skewer my eyes). An obervations is an observation, and it can come from an experiment or from walking down the street (or sitting under an apple tree). Both can inspire hypotheses. Maybe ExperimentalObservation as a subclass of Observation.



  2. > change it to publication and leave the taxonomy of publications to another ontology.

    I second this thought. With the bibo and SPAR ontologies, there is not much need to reinvent bibliographic and citation-related classes & properties.

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