Joint Committee Minutes 8 May 2001

This page summarizes the telecon for the Joint US/EU Committee on Agent Markup Languages held from 1300 to 1400 PDT on 8 May 2001. These minutes were prepared by the acting chairperson (Deborah McGuinness) in the absence of the normal chairperson (Mike Dean), and were approved during the 15 May telecon.



Last Meeting's Minutes

The minutes from April 24 were approved by those present.  There was no meeting on May 1 due to the WWW 10 conference.

WWW10 Conference Report (information from Frank van Harmelen, Stefan Decker, and Ora Lassila)

General - There was a strong semantic web theme in the air at the conference.  Also, there will be a semantic web track at next year's conference.   Carole Goble is expected to be one of the co-chairs of that track along with Eric Miller (who is the chair of the W3C semantic web activity).

During the semantic web panel, Stefan presented the DAML program, Tim Berners-Lee preseneted the semantic web vision,  Dieter Fensel presented information on ontologies, and there was a presentation on MPEG 7.  It appears that the panel went well.  (Chairperson's note - MPEG 7 was presented by Ana Belen Benitez.)    Tim Berners-Lee presented a dependency graph diagram of what W3C was working on.
A pointer that requires SVG for viewing is available at:

One interesting question that may be worth our committee's attention is why there are both XML Schema and RDF Schema (and why one needs more than XML Schema).  Frank proposed the answer that XML Schema is useful for encoding a structure while RDF Schema is useful encoding the meaning of the terms in a structure. Another comment worth considering is the request that languages be such that "a journalist could write [in the language] by hand".
Some issues that arose with DAML are  making more explicit layers for expressiveness, adding back more of the "frame feeling" of the language.
One final impression from the meeting from Frank is that of "cautious interest" for DAML+OIL.

There was a suggestion that we obtain the viewgraphs.  (Chairperson's note: since the meeting,  Lynda Hardman has made the slides available at .  This is expected to also be published on the daml web site.)

The W3C RDF Core WG had a meeting during W3C.  Ora Lassila reported.  
One concern may be that there should not be semantic web efforts that take resources away from other efforts (such as the lower level XML efforts).  There may be 10-11 W3C people working at some level on the semantic web activities.

A discussion followed on whether someone like Pat Hayes (representing the logicist viewpoint) would be asked to join the RDF core working group.  It was speculated that he (or someone like him) would be asked to join when his expertise was needed.  (Chairperson's note - I am leaving in the pointer to the member list from 2 weeks ago.  I assume this is updated but since it is not a public site, I can not check it.  I am also leaving the pointer to the email archives which are public.)
The full member list is not public, but the email archives (including Introductions from most members) are.

The web ontology committee has not started yet.  Eric Miller (the chair of the larger semantic web activity) has just had a baby and it is expected that there will be additional activity in the general area once he returns to email processing regularly.  One issue that we should address is making sure that the web ontology effort will not take resources away from other core w3c web work.  One issue that may help is that Ora Lassila is willing to be scribe of both the web ontology committee as well as the RDF core working group, thereby providing a liason between both groups.

There was a developers day at www10 which included at least presentations on how to build a semantic web site.  Again the impression from the committee member in attendance (Stefan) was that the semantic web was taking off at this conference.

Dieter Fensel's email prior to the meeting contained 3 points:
Layering.  We discussed the usefulness of layering.  This can be viewed as being helped if there is a tutorial guide that will lead new users through the simple portions of the language first.  Stefan is working on a draft.
Naming:  We are expecting a renaming of the ontology language with the onset of the web ontology committee thus this issue was not addressed in detail.
Frame-feel:  The issue of look and feel of a language may be addressed with tools.  One suggestion was to ask dan connolly if he is ready to submit any of his tools for general usage.

Lessons Learned:   Dan Connolly asked about the availability of the lessons learned exercises that funded researchers did for DAML.  Kelly Barber identified that lessons learned 1 and 3 were available and she was checking on the lessons learned from homework 2.

Upcoming Weeks

On May 15, we'll plan to review the strawman rules proposal from Pat Hayes.  Pat will send out email prior to the meeting.  (He has also sent email on May 10 on the issue).
We will also discuss the issue of daml imports (postponed from last week).
Imports link:


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