Status: initial listing of some related OIL documents in progress

Feedback to www-rdf-logic, please.

Deborah McGuinness, editor
$Revision: 1.1 $ of $Date: 2000/10/19 03:43:57 $

This page attempts to provide information concerning OIL- The Ontology Inference Layer - from the perspective of a reader interested in DAML and its evolution. There is an active discussion going on the www-rdf-logic mailing list concerning the evolution of the DAML ontology language and its relations to OIL, thus it may be useful to read some background information.

OIL is a language built on a long history of research in description logics. Description Logic is a subfield of knowledge representation and as such aims to provide a vehicle for expressing structured information and for reasoning with the information in a principled manner. Description logics may be viewed as providing a formal foundation for frame-based systems, object-oriented representations, semantic data models, and type systems. OIL is an effort to produce a well defined language for integrating ontologies with web standards (in particular RDF/RDFS and XML/XMLS). It is a web-based representation and inference layer for ontologies using the constructs found in many frame languages and reasoning and formal semantics in description logics.

There is a main OIL site which contains a number of documents of interest. Perhaps the most interesting documents are the:

There will be another document posted soon providing a mapping between OIL and DAML-ONT. Currently there are discussions concerning the differences between OIL and DAML-ONT. See, for example, the thread on the RDF-logic mailing list.


This collection pulls together an incomplete list of pointers to many other people's work. It draws heavily on a long history (over 20 years) of work in description logics. Most recently it leans on work done by the authors of OIL: Jeen Broekstra, Stefan Decker, Michael Erdmann, Dieter Fensel, Carole Goble, Frank van Harmelen, Ian Horrocks, Michel Klein, Deborah McGuinness, Enrico Motta, Peter Patel-Schneider, Steffen Staab, and Rudi Studer.