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[protege-discussion] Homonym relationships

Thomas Russ tar at
Wed Sep 8 09:35:41 PDT 2010

On Sep 7, 2010, at 9:10 PM, manjula wijewickrema wrote:

> Hello,
> In my ontology, I need to give homonym relationships (same word, but  
> have two different meanings) for some selected classes. For example,  
> the word 'Ontology' is given in my knowledge base and it has two  
> different meanings in philosophy and information sciences. So how  
> can I build the homonym reltionships among them usin Protege? (when  
> I quering the word 'Ontology', this both meanings should be given by  
> the system.)

There a couple of ways you could do this.  But one fundamental feature  
they all share is that you have to create a unique ontology object for  
each of the different meanings that you want to have.  So you would  
have to have two different ontology objects for "Ontology", to  
represent the different meanings.

Using separate namespaces with different URNs like Alex Shkotin  
described is one way of setting up different meanings.  Another option  
would be to use your own naming scheme inside a single namespace, say  
calling the classes Ontology_ComputerScience and Ontology_Philosophy.   
A third approach would use generated names for these items and then  
annotations to associate human readable names.

The second issue is how to associate these different meanings with the  
string "Ontology".  You could do this in several ways, but one common  
method would be to use an AnnotationProperty to associate words with  
particular classes.  You would then do our query over the values of  
the words on this AnnotationProperty.  One nice feature of this  
structure is that you can then have both multiple classes with the  
same word, and also multiple words for each class.

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