BMIR Protégé

Category Intelligent Software>Expert (Knowledge Based) Systems/Tools

Abstract Protégé is a free, open-source platform that provides a growing user community with a suite of tools to construct domain models and 'knowledge-based applications' with ontologies.

At its core, Protégé implements a rich set of knowledge-modeling structures and actions that support the creation, visualization, and manipulation of ontologies in various representation formats.

Protégé can be customized to provide domain-friendly support for creating knowledge models and entering data. Further, Protégé can be extended by way of a plug-in architecture and a Java-based Application Programming Interface (API) (see Protégé Programming Development Kit below...) for building ‘knowledge-based tools’ and applications.

An ontology describes the concepts and relationships that are important in a particular domain, providing a vocabulary for that domain as well as a computerized specification of the meaning of terms used in the vocabulary.

Ontologies range from taxonomies and classifications, database schemas, to fully axiomatized theories.

In recent years, ontologies have been adopted in many business and scientific communities as a way to share, reuse and process domain knowledge. Ontologies are now central to many applications such as 'scientific knowledge portals', information management and integration systems, electronic commerce, and semantic web services.

Protégé Programming Development Kit -- The Protégé Programming Development Kit (PDK) is a set of documentation and examples that describes and illustrates how to develop and install plug-in extensions for Protégé, and how to work directly with the Protégé APIs.

Plug-ins can be used to change and extend the behavior of Protégé. Protégé itself is written as a collection of plug-ins and these can be replaced singly or as a whole to completely alter the interface and behavior of Protégé.

Protégé has a core API, which is used to access basic Protégé functionalities and frame-based knowledge bases (such as those created with Protégé-Frames - see below...).

Protégé also has an OWL API that extends the core API to provide access to OWL ontologies (such as those created with Protégé-OWL - see below...).

The Protégé API can be used directly by external applications to access Protégé ‘knowledge bases’ and make use of Protégé forms without running the Protégé application.

The Protégé platform supports two (2) main ways of modeling ontologies:

1) The Protégé-Frames editor provides a full-fledged user interface and knowledge server to support users in constructing and storing frame- based domain ontologies, customizing data entry forms, and entering instance data.

Protégé-Frames implements a 'knowledge model' which is compatible with the [Open Knowledge Base Connectivity protocol (OKBC) - an application programming interface for accessing knowledge bases stored in knowledge representation systems (KRSs)].

In this model, an ontology consists of a set of classes organized in a subsumption hierarchy to represent a domain’s salient concepts, a set of slots associated to classes to describe their properties and relationships, and a set of instances of those classes - individual exemplars of the concepts that hold specific values for their properties.

Features of Protégé-Frames include:

2) The Protégé-OWL editor is an extension of Protégé that supports the Web Ontology Language (OWL). OWL is the most recent development in standard ontology languages, endorsed by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to promote the Semantic Web vision.

"An OWL ontology may include descriptions of classes, properties and their instances. Given such an ontology, the OWL formal semantics specifies how to derive its logical consequences, i.e. facts Not literally present in the ontology, but entailed by the semantics.

These entailments may be based on a single document or multiple distributed documents that have been combined using defined OWL mechanisms".

The Protégé-OWL editor enables users to:

Protégé-OWL's flexible architecture makes it easy to configure and extend the tool.

Protégé-OWL is tightly integrated with Jena (one of the most widely used Java APIs for RDF and OWL, providing services for model representation, parsing, database persistence, querying and some visualization tools) and has an open-source Java API named the 'Protégé-OWL API' [an open-source Java library for the Web Ontology Language and RDF(S).

This API provides classes and methods to load and save OWL files, to query and manipulate OWL data models, and to perform reasoning...] for the development of custom-tailored user interface components or arbitrary 'Semantic Web' services.

Note: Protégé is a national resource for biomedical ontologies and knowledge bases supported by the U.S. National Library of Medicine and Protégé is a core component of The National Center for Biomedical Ontology.

System Requirements

Protégé runs on platforms that support JDK version 1.4. This includes all modern versions of MS Windows (NT/2000/XP), the common versions of Unix including Linux, Solaris, AIX, and HP-UX, and on the Mac OS X. Check current requirements.


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G6G Abstract Number 20252

G6G Manufacturer Number 102506