trying out eclipse RCP and RDF

We created a sample Eclipse RCP application that shows how to use sesame and a bit of gnowsis inside SWT and eclipse. We plan to see if we can benefit from Eclipse RCP in Nepomuk. more about this hack here on the gnowsis site.


This is what we did:
We started at 17:30 by downloading Eclipse 3.2 and slavishly following the Hello World Tutorial here.

ok, all worked, the empty “hello World” deployment thingy with .exe file and so on weights 7MB. wuff but ok.

Then Leo decided to rename the packages from “semanticdesktop” to “com.example.semanticdesktop” and that was the last time we saw our hello world. shoots, restart.

After Benny got the control, he changed the plugins first window from title “Hello World” to “Semantic Desktop”.

Hours later….

ok, we try now the “mail demo” and extend it with a RDF view showing hte pimo tree. First problem: we don’t want to import openrdf directly but instead import it as OSGI bundle (woa, cool). Hm, the best approach seems the wizard “plugin from existing jar archives”. that generates useful output.

Result at 19:30: we managed to include Sesame and gnowsis as Eclipse OSGI bundles and were able to load the PIMO ontology language from a local file and display it in a tree. Its a lot of work but it looks cool. So, Beer now.

strasbourg, we are coming

tomorrow Ingrid and I am going to Strasbourg, shopping for burning man. Strasbourg.

So these are the possibilities, recently googled:

  • There is a marché aux Puces (flea market) on rue de Vieil-Hopital on Wednesday and
  • The Place des Halles, 24 place des Halles, is the main commercial center (open Mon-Fri 0900-2000 and Sat 0900-1900 2000!), with approximately 120 shops, as well as 10 restaurants and bars. The two main department stores, open daily 1000–1900, are both situated near place Kléber – Galeries Lafayettes, rue du 22 Novembre, and Printemps, 1-5 rue de la Haute Montée. FNAC, place Kléber, is also worth a visit for all things electronic and electrical.
    Designer shops can be found along rue des Orfèvres (Chanel and Yves Saint-Laurent) and rue de la Mésange (Cartier, Gucci and Hermès), with chic outlets along rue des Hallebardes and the up-and-coming rue du Vieux-Marché-aux-Poissons (Kenzo, Cerruti and Georges Rech), fast becoming lined with designer names. On the other end of the fashion scale, visitors can buy second-hand clothes, priced according to their weight, from Kilo Shop, 6 rue de la Lanterne, while traditional Alsatian costumes are for sale or hire at Maison du Costume Alsacien, 11b quai de Turckheim.
    There is an all-day food market at place Broglie on Wednesday and Friday and a flea market at place de la Grande Boucherie and rue du Vieil Hôpital on Wednesday and Saturday.linksame text, different site
  • bruno saint hilaire, rue gutemberg 8. hm, designer stuff, expensive
  • Im ganzen Altstadtgebiet ….finden sich aber auch private, individuelle Geschäfte, die Mode, Kunsthandwerk, Antiquitäten, Schmuck und Acessoires, Delikatessen, Bücher usw. anbieten. Vor allem in der Gegend um die Rue des Juifs und auf dem rechten Ufer der Ill finden sich Angebote für ein eher urbanes Publikum.

Cypher: a product that translates language to RDF

cypher by monrai

The Cypher™ alpha release is a program which generates the .rdf (RDF graph) and .serql (SeRQL query) representation of a natural language input. With robust definition languages, Cypher’s grammar and lexicon can quickly and easily be extended to process highly complex sentences and phrases of any natural language, and can cover any vocabulary. Equipped with Cypher, programmers can now begin building next generation semantic web applications that harness what is already the most widely used tool known to man – natural language.

So, a company is going on the market! Horray. Best wishes to them, and I sure want to check if that baby can help gnowsis.

Validating ontologies in Gnowsis and Named Graphs for provenance

In the latest SVN version of gnowsis, we have various improvements on handling ontologies, validating them and so on.

All information about that is here:

Managing Domain Ontologies

Adding ontologies, removing ontologies, updating ontologies is implemented in the PimoService. A convenient interface to these functions is implemented in the web-gui:

A list of ontologies that work with gnowsis is at DomainOntologies.

The implementation of Domain Ontologies is done using named graphs in sesame.
read on at Named graphs in Pimo.

Domain ontologies are added/deleted/updated using methods of the PimoService.
You can interact directly with the triples of an ontology in the store, but you have to care for inference and the correct context yourself then.

Validation of PIMO Models – PimoChecker

The semantics of the PIMO language allow us to verify the integrity of the data. In normal RDF/S semantics, verification is not possible. For example, setting the domain of the property knows to the class Person, and then using this property on an instance Rome Business Plan of class Document creates, using RDF/S, the new information that the Document is also a Person. In the PIMO language, domain and range restrictions are used to validate the data.
The PIMO is checked using a Java Object called PimoChecker?, that encapsulates a Jena reasonser to do the checking and also does more tricks:

The following rules describe what is validated in the PIMO, a formal description is given in the gnowsis implementation’s PIMO rule file.

  • All relating properties need inverse properties.
  • Check domain and range of relating and describing properties.
  • Check domain and range for rdf:type statements
  • Cardinality restrictions using the protege statements
  • Rdfs:label is mandatory for instances of ”Thing” and classes
  • Every resource that is used as object of a triple has to have a rdf:type set. This is a prerequisite for checking domains and ranges.

Above rules are checking semantic modeling errors, that are based on errors made by programmers or human users.
Following are rules that check if the inference engine correctly created the closure of the model: –

  • All statements that have a predicate that has an inverse defined require another triple in the model representing the inverse statement.

The rules work only, when the language constructs and upper ontology are part of the model that is validated. For example, validating Paul’s PIMO is only possible when the PIMO-Basic and PIMO-Upper is available to the inference engine, otherwise the definition of the basic classes and properties are missing. The validation can be used to restrict updates to the data model in a way that only valid data can be stored into the database. Or, the model can be validated on a regular basis after the changes were made. In the gnowsis prototype, validation was activated during automatic tests of the system, to verify that the software generates valid data in different situations. Ontologies are also validated during import to the ontology store. Before validating a new ontology, it’s import declarations have to be satisfied. The test begins by building a temporal ontology model, where first the ontology under test and then all imported ontologies are added. If an import cannot be satisfied, because the required ontology is not already part of the system, either the missing part could be fetched from the internet using the ontology identifier as URL, or the user can be prompted to import the missing part first. When all imports are satisfied, the new ontology under test is validated and added to the system. A common mistake at this point is to omit the PIMO-Basic and PIMO-Upper import declarations. By using this strict testing of ontologies, conceptual errors show at an early stage. Strict usage of import-declarations makes dependencies between ontologies explicit, whereas current best practice in the RDF/S based semantic web community has many implicit imports that are often not leveraged.

talk about the upcoming Social Semantic Desktop Platform on Sep7th, SRI, CA

I will be giving a seminar on

The Nepomuk Project – about the upcoming Social Semantic Desktop Platform

Date: Thursday September 07, 2006 at 16:00:00
Location: EJ228 (Directions)
Artificial Intelligence Center, SRI International, 333 Ravenswood Avenue, Menlo Park, CA 94025-3493


please come to this seminar, I want to knit new connections between people in the Europe and California Semantic Web scene. If you come, write a short notice to and perhaps to Neil Yorke-Smith, (nysmith workingat AI.SRI.COM) who is organizing the event together with Jack Park.


Different research institutes are working on a vision titled “Semantic Desktop”, a semantically enhanced desktop computer that allows us to access semantic web data and desktop data in a uniform way. The European Union Integrated Project NEPOMUK ( started in 2006 and intends to realize and deploy a comprehensive solution – methods, data structures, and a set of tools – for extending the personal computer into a collaborative environment, which improves the state of art in online collaboration and personal data management and augments the intellect of people by providing and organizing information created by single or group efforts. NEPOMUK brings together researchers, industrial software developers, and representative industrial users. In this talk you will get an introduction on the theory behind the Semantic Desktop, ontologies, databases, user interfaces and projects that work on this topic. Details about the current open-source implementations are presented and a demo is given. The lecture will finish with a discussion, where similarities and differences to the OpenIRIS project by SRI will be an important question.

Bio for Leo Sauermann

Leo Sauermann studied Information science at the Vienna University of Technology. Under the project name “gnowsis” he merged Personal Information Management with Semantic Web technologies, resulting in a master thesis about “Using Semantic Web technologies to build a Semantic Desktop”. Working as a researcher at the DFKI since 2004, he continued the work and now maintains the associated open-source project gnowsis. His research focus is on Semantic Web and its use in Knowledge Management. In autumn 2003 he started to give talks about his work and he is publishing frequently on the topic. From 1998 to 2002 he has been working in several small software companies, including the position of lead architect at Impact Business Computing developing mobile CRM solutions. He is an experienced programmer in both Delphi and Java. At the moment he is working on the EU integrated project Nepomuk.

Note for Visitors to SRI

Please arrive at least 10 minutes early in order to sign in and be escorted to the conference room. SRI is located at 333 Ravenswood Avenue in Menlo Park. Visitors may park in the visitors lot in front of Building E, and should call extension 2592 to be escorted to the meeting room. Detailed directions to SRI, as well as maps, are available from the Visiting AIC web page.

timeline visualisation by simile

The simile team has published another nice reusable component: timeline visualization.

The advantage of this visualization is that it is programmed completly in Javascript, reusable like the google maps API.

In their words:
Timeline is a DHTML-based AJAXy widget for visualizing time-based events. It is like Google Maps for time-based information.

This is their nice logo:

A introduction howto program it is here:

A first glance at it convinces me: this looks easy to use. They published the code in a SVN repository, so packaging it with something else is possible.

Danny Ayers pickes up the idea, and blogged a nice vision of how to combine GEO-data together with photo annotation and timelines, read here.

heute kein great escape’!

Hallo Kaiserslauterer,

nur zur Kurzinfo und wie immer viel zu spät:
Heute ist kein “The Great Escape” im Glockencafe in Kaiserslautern!

die Fussball-WM bietet Ablenkung und geistige Nahrung genug.

Der nächste Great Escape ist dann am Montag 7. August 2006 im Glockencafe, 20:00 Abends!

Mozart and the Burning Man

I visited one of the three major Mozart exhibitions in Vienna, Mozart – Experiment Aufklärung, brought together by Herbert Lachmayer’s, a relative of mine, DaPonte Institue. That visit was on 25th June 2006.

So, Mozart was part of the Age of Enlightment, and the Opera “The Magic Flute/ Die Zauberflöte” is a multi-layered piece of information, it was a part of its time, bringing new ways of story-telling, also its “Free-Masons” hints. So, the setting of the Queen of the Night VS Sarastro, the temple chief of geek wisdom, is perfect for Burning Man.

So, to write down this idea:

  • Mozart has his 250th Birthday, he is part of Austrian/German culture
  • we can bring our culture to Burningman, but we can bring only Costumes and no buildings (via Plane) to burningman
  • We can align our costumes with the “Zauberflöte”. Ingrid wants to be Papagena. Who is in for the Queen of the Night? Lars fits good for Sarastro :-). Leobard will be Papageno
  • We search, on site of Burningman, for possible Stages for the Play. See below for the different stages, thats gonna be the easiest part on a site like Burning Man 🙂
  • We use the tricks with portable MP3 players and spread out the Music/Words to the masses using MP3Players. Alternatively, if we find enough actors they could sing (with the MP3 Players accompanying). The Play could be improvised like Improveverywhere did with their MP3 Experiment
  • We have to cut the play down to 45 minutes, so probably all of Monosthatos and parts of the 2nd Act’s tests will have to be cut away. Also, we have to make a script that tells the Actors and Audience to move from stage to stage
  • Altogehter, we can play parts of the Opera at all times
  • The pimp character of Mozart is a good help here. Reading from the nasty letters as side-order may help

If we get more artist people in, it may be perfect. There are actors like Marisa Lenhardt or Natalie Wilson who are both on BurningMan and have sung the Queen of the Night.

Things we have to take with us:

  • a magic flute (hehe)
  • The Zauberflöte – das Buch. I already bought two Reclam versions
  • costumes
  • the cut-down music/play as MP3s, multiple MP3s for each scene one. Some MP3 players
  • printouts of the text and directions

Sites we have to find to re-play Zauberflöte:

  • In the wilderness,
  • a Temple.
  • A room in Sarastro’s palace.
  • Grove and entrance to the temples.
  • The courtyard of the temple of Ordeal.
  • A garden.
  • A hall in the temple of Ordeal.
  • The pyramids.
  • An open country.
  • Rocks with water and a cavern of fire.

I already collected some pictures to go with it, more will come:

lebard's photos tagged with mozart More of lebard’s photos tagged with mozart