2014 New Year's Address to IAOA Members by the Executive Council

Dear IAOA members,

Happy New Year!

Looking back on 2013, it is evident that our Association is thriving in a number of areas.

2013's Summer Institute was held in cooperation with the Vespucci Institute in Fiesole, Italy in June. The selected topic was: "Ontologies and models for integrated assessments of multiple-scale processes".  Using the notion of "land functions" as a basis, discussions covered a host of highly interdisciplinary approaches, including spatial micro-simulation models for environments and social science, to move towards an ontology of land function and land function dynamics.
Dimitris Ballas (University of Sheffield), Tom Bittner (SUNY-Buffalo), Max Craglia (JRC), Werner Kuhn (University of Münster), Carlo Lavalle (JRC) served as facilitators. And particular thanks go to Werner Kuhn for his energy and assistance in another highly successful Summer Institute!

IAOA was also one of the co-organizers for OntologySummit 2013, which addressed the theme "Ontology Evaluation Across the Ontology Lifecycle" and explored criteria, tools, and techniques for evaluating ontologies.
 In addition, marking a new development for the Association, IAOA sponsored a Prize for the Best Hackathon-Clinic Project at the Ontology Summit.
The winners of the Award in 2013 were:
- Mike Bennett (FIBO; EDM Council; Hypercube)
- María Poveda Villalón (OOPS!; Universidad Politécnica de Madrid)
- Astrid Duque Ramos (OQuaRE; University of Murcia)
- Samir Tartir (OntoQA; Philadelphia University, Jordan)
Congratulations to all of the winners.

The new Semantic Web Applied Ontology SIG was created in November, with Leo Obrst leading the effort. Various activities continued in the other Special Interest Groups and Technical Committees, although we are strongly encouraging much higher participation levels from members in the future!  There is much to do. In particular, we are hoping to energize the Education Committee and initiate the development of an ontology textbook. Zena Wood has agreed to be the new Chair of the Education Committee, taking over from Antony Galton and Fabian Neuhaus.

The year also brought changes to the Executive Council, with Giancarlo Guizzardi and Laure Vieu both retiring. Many thanks to Giancarlo and Laure for all of their hard work!  Laure, in particular, has served as our Treasurer since the inception of the Association, an absolutely vital role. The current success of IAOA is in large part due to her untiring efforts, and she will be greatly missed.

Elections were held in 2013, and Janna Hastings and Marion Haemmerli both joined the Executive Council, with their term starting this January, 2014. Re-elected to the Executive Council were Oliver Kutz, Frank Loebe, Fabian Neuhaus, and Leo Obrst.

For the coming year, 2014, we are eagerly anticipating a wide range of major events.  Foremost, we have FOIS occurring this year September 22-25 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  With Laure Vieu as General Chair, Pawel Garbacz and Oliver Kutz as Programme Committee Chairs, and Giancarlo Guizzardi and Renato Rocha Souza as Organization Chairs, FOIS promises to be a spectacular venue for the presentation of the latest ontological research. For the latest information, visit the website at http://fois2014.inf.ufes.br .

The Second Interdisciplinary Summer School on Ontological Analysis will also take place in Vitoria, Brazil, in the week before FOIS. The emphasis here will be on ontological analysis, pursuing the goal of showing how the different disciplines within IAOA interact and communicate to answer a variety of problems. Details on the program/courses of the school, venue and accommodation and registration procedures are available at http://iaoa.org/isc2014 .

As in previous years, IAOA will again be a co-organizer of the Ontology Summit. Ontology Summit 2014 has selected as theme for this year "Big Data and Semantic Web Meet Applied Ontology".  The Summit will offer a particularly important opportunity for building bridges between the Semantic Web, Linked Data, Big Data, and Applied Ontology communities. The Kickoff session takes place already on January 16, 2014 -- for more details, see http://ontolog.cim3.net/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?OntologySummit2014 .
This coming year therefore holds great promise for new activities within the Association as well as new opportunities for involvement across all the interdisciplinary areas that make up Applied Ontology. We therefore look forward to your continuing support in all the endeavours of IAOA and will hope to see you at any or all of this year's face-to-face events!

Michael Gruninger and John Bateman
for the IAOA Executive Council

The 7th International Workshop on Modular Ontologies (WoMO-13) - report

The 7th International Workshop on Modular Ontologies (WoMO-13) took place in Coruña (Galicia, Spain) co-located with the 12th International Conference on Logic Programming and Nonmonotonic Reasoning (LPNMR-13). LPNMR-13 has been a good host: they took care of the local organisation of rooms, coffee breaks, registration, and they also handled the finances of the co-located workshops. WoMO-13 registrants have also been invited to the LPNMR-13 reception held at the Universidade da Coruña, in the main hall overlooking the ocean. The view could have not been more stunning thanks to the sunny weather that delighted the attendants the whole day.

WoMO-13 has five accepted papers. The CEUR proceedings (http://ceur-ws.org/Vol-1081/) include two additional contributions: one by Prof. Till Mossakowski (University of Magdeburg), whose invited talk was supported by IAOA; and one by Prof. George Vourous (University of Piraeus), whose invited talk was co-organised with the co-located workshop CLIMA XIV - Computational Logic in Multi-Agent Systems, and funded by SINTELNET.

The WoMO-13 Programme consisted of 2 invited talks, 4 long papers, and 1 short paper. To offer the attendants a richer schedule and to widen the audience, the Organising Committee decided to join the effort with ARCOE-13, a workshop associated with LPNMR-13 on a topic related to WoMO-13, that had 3 accepted papers and one invited speaker.

The workshop programme is detailed in what follows:

10:00-11:00: WoMO invited talk:
- Till Mossakowski: The Distributed Ontology, Modeling and Specification Language
11:00-11:25: WoMO session I
- Soudabeh Ghafourian, Mahmoud Naghibzadeh and Amin Rezaeian: Modularization of Graph-Structured Ontology with Semantic Similarity
11:25-12:00: Coffee break 
12:00-13:30: WoMO session II
- Ralph Schäfermeier and Adrian Paschke: Towards a Unified Approach to Modular Ontology Development Using the Aspect-Oriented Paradigm
- Patrick Koopmann and Renate A. Schmidt: Implementation and Evaluation of Forgetting in ALC-Ontologies
- William Gatens, Boris Konev and Frank Wolter: Module Extraction for Acyclic Ontologies
- Francisco Martin-Recuerda and Dirk Walther: Fast atomic decomposition using axiom dependency hypergraphs
13:30-15:00: Lunch break
15:00-16:35: ARCOE session I 
16:35-17:00: Coffee break 
17:00-17:25: ARCOE session II 
17:25-18:30: WoMO+CLIMA invited talk
- George Vouros: Combining ontologies in settings with multiple agents

The OC has received enthusiastic feedback from the audience for the generous support of IAOA.

SIG for Semantic Web Applied Ontology? Let us know what you think!

+++ Post edited by Leo J. Obrst, September 24 2013 +++
There is an informal proposal before the EC to form a Semantic Web Applied Ontology SIG aiming to fill the gap between the Semantic Web community and the IAOA community. Some people have shown interest in this initiative. As part of investigating this issue, we’d like to get feedback from IAOA members.
Often the two communities seem to think they have nothing in common, whereas some of us believe they share many common goals, common technologies, and a common interest in well-engineered applied ontologies. Many of us in IAOA promote and use Semantic Web technologies and reasoning methods; similarly, many in the Semantic Web community advocate more rigorous and principled ontologies based on ontological analysis.  Therefore, we have proposed a Semantic Web Applied Ontology SIG to bridge the gap between our two communities before it gets wider. This SIG would support communication and collaboration with our colleagues in the Semantic Web (and Linked Data) community.
Are you interested in this SIG? What do you think the SIG should do? How might the SIG work to bridge the gap? Would you participate in this SIG?
Please let us know your thoughts about such a SIG.

+++ ONTOLOG Community Planning Sesssion +++
First meeting after the summer break
Date: Thursday, 12-Sep-2013
Start Time: 10:30am PDT / 1:30pm EDT / 7:30pm CEST / 6:30pm BST / 1730 UTC
Expected Call Duration: 1.5~2.0 hours
Time to make changes, schedule events, propose your topics of interest.
Don't miss this and next meeting (same hour, September 19).
For more info on the programm and on how to dial in:

New FOIS logo adopted

Thanks to all those who have been actively involved, the search for a new logo for IAOA's flagship conference series Formal Ontology in Information Systems (FOIS) has come to an end with a ballot held between July 25 and August 06, 2013 - and this is our new FOIS logo (in the 2014 version).

A few details on the ballot. The options were comprised of a set of 10 proposals [1] for which IAOA members could vote in terms of assigning their preferences via a scale from 0 (liked least) to 9 (liked most) for each logo. These ratings were then transformed into pure orderings and the latter were evaluated according to the Schulze method [2]. 36 IAOA members participated in this ballot, where no quorum had to be met. Interestingly, no two voters expressed exactly the same preference ordering. For exactly a quarter of the voters the winning logo H (identifying letters are taken from [1]) has been among their first-ranked items - in a tie with logo C if just the first rankings are considered, whereas C is ranked on the fourth place if all preferences are evaluated.

Special thanks goes to everyone who invested time and effort in providing and discussing logo proposals - including the contributors of the new logo, Gaoussou Camara and Omar Faye. Likewise, many thanks to all voters for expressing their opinions. All of this appreciably supports IAOA as a community.

[1] http://iaoablog.blogspot.de/2013/06/fois-logo-proposals-request-for-comments.html

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schulze_method

PS: Apologies for the delayed news.

FOIS logo proposals: IAOA members, please cast your vote!

We greatly thank everyone who has been involved in proposing the final set of 10 (!) candidates for a logo of IAOA's flagship conference series Formal Ontology in Information Systems (FOIS), see this earlier blog entry.

A few minutes ago (Jul 25, 12:00 CEST), the voting period on those logos has started, where IAOA member's can provide scores for each proposal. The ballot closes in 12 days, on Aug 06, 12:00 CEST, results are to be announced within a few days later. More details on the ballot have been distributed by email (accessible to IAOA-members).


@ ALL: Stay tuned for the winning proposal!

Comments (1)

** Gentle Reminder: Choose and Propose your FOIS Logo until July 10 **

Dear all,

this is a gentle reminder that we're looking for comments and additional proposals for a new FOIS logo __until tomorrow, Wednesday, July 10__. Available means for comments include this blog, as well as the IAOA internal mailing list.

Since the start of the discussion phase, two new proposals have been added to the original blog post as well as some variants of proposals, please see the previous post .

Many thanks for all contributions,
Frank Loebe

FOIS logo proposals: Request for comments

IAOA is seeking a new logo for its flagship conference, Formal Ontology in Information Systems (FOIS), prior to its next edition in 2014. After a call for proposals to the membership in May 2013, the IAOA Executive Council is presenting the current set of logo proposals below.

Importantly, all proposals are in the stage of conceptual drafts, in particular, there are no up-to-date adaptations to the year 2014. Regarding the overall procedure, over the next two weeks (i.e., until July 10) we are interested in comments and possibly new proposals, before IAOA members will be asked to cast a vote on the set of proposals then available. Thereafter, a professional designer shall further improve the winning proposal and create a state-of-the-art logo out of it.

Logo Proposals

Please have a look at the three proposals below and share your opinion and preferences, propose modifications or even new ideas from scratch. Blog comments offer the widest visibility for that, while comments via email [1,2] or other channels are likewise welcome.

Please comment until July 10, 2013, as the discussion will be evaluated starting from July 11.

Proposal A

Proposal B

Proposal C

Proposal D      [EDIT 2013.06.27]

Proposal E      [EDIT 2013.07.09]

Proposal F      [EDIT 2013.07.09]

Proposal G      [EDIT 2013.07.09]

Proposal H      [EDIT 2013.07.09]

Proposal I      [EDIT 2013.07.09]


Proposal J      [EDIT 2013.07.09] 


Proposal K      [EDIT 2013.08.20] 

Further background on the proposals

Proposal A is the first graphical logo that has been used for FOIS in 2001 and, in modified form, in 2010. Probably obviously, it is inspired by taxonomic hierarchies.

Proposal B is novel and is partitioned into interlocking areas hosting formal ontology and information systems. The colors follow the coloring scheme of the IAOA website.

Proposal C is novel, as well, and embodies metaphors of classification (in terms of distinct pieces) and integration (via interlocking puzzle pieces). Coloring is also inspired by the IAOA website. Space above and below the "ribbon" can be used for adding information, e.g. the year of the respective FOIS, the location, or the conference title in full.

[EDIT 2013.06.27]
Proposal D has newly come up after the initial version of this entry. The structure is reminiscent of Aristotle's square and the color scheme is intended to vary according to the hosting country. As shown here, it includes colors of Brazil.

[EDIT 2013.07.09]
Proposals E-J have newly come up after the initial version of this entry, without further remarks.

[EDIT 2013.08.20]
Proposal K was not voted on in the ballot for the new logo (Jul 25-Aug 06) because it was only submitted after the ballot had startet. Its point is to refer to the part-whole-relation within / in terms of the logo. It has been added here for completeness in the documentation of the process.

We appreciate comments on all aspects of these proposals. Please comment within the blog (publically readable), write to the member's mailing list [1], or write to the Secretary via [2] until July 10, 2013.

[1] http://ontolog.cim3.net/mailman/listinfo/iaoa-member
[2] http://www.iaoa.org/contact/contact.php

[EDIT 2013.07.04]

Variants of Proposals

Fanning the flames of interest, we present variations of the above proposals.

for Proposal A for Proposal B

for Proposal C

for Proposal D

for Proposal F

for Proposal J 

Comments (10)

Virtual Workshop : join today

Semantics in Geospatial and Other Architectures: Design and Implementation
May 7, 2013, starting at 12:30 Eastern Time

The virtual workshop will focus on the design, use, and software development of semantic technology in various types of systems.
The dial-in number is: (US): +1 (206) 402-0100 (long distance)
When prompted enter Conference ID: 141184#
One of the purposes of this workshop is to find examples of how to include semantic technology in systems, such as, geospatial portals, statewide information systems, spatial data infrastructures (e.g., NSDIs), database systems, and cyberinfrastructures. Because the use of semantics in the geospatial area is still relatively new, other domains and applications will also be presented. Semantic technology can encompass ontologies, repositories, mappings, reasoners, and other components as well as linked data. This virtual workshop may lead to a 2 day in-person workshop in the fall.

Endorse the 2013 IAOA Summit Communique!

The 2013 IAOA Ontology Summit is over. 

Thank you to all parties involved and to the organizers for the event. 

The final version of the Communique can be found at


Time of endorsement: !!! Extended to June 15 !!!

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