ISWC 2009 Tutorials/Working with Explanations of OWL Entailments

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Working with Explanations of OWL Entailments (half day tutorial)

Sunday, 25th October, 8:30- 12:30


In complex ontologies, users are often baffled by the behavior of the reasoner. Even if we restrict ourselves to "buggy" entailments (e.g., unsatisfiable classes) it is often unclear why those entailments hold. The reasons as to why an entailment arises in an ontology can range from fairly simple localized glitches through to highly non-obvious problems scattered throughout the ontology. In the case of very large ontologies, manually pinpointing the reasons for an entailment can be a frustrating task, especially as it is typically only a very small percentage of the ontology that is responsible for the entailment. Tool support in the form of an explanation workbench plug-in has recently been made available for Protege 4. This plug-in makes it possible to obtain and browse explanations for entailments. Using the explanation workbench plug-in, the tutorial will introduce explanation of entailments in OWL. The tutorial will cover everything from now standard justification finding services to cutting edge experimental support for model exploration. Participants will be exposed to a wide range of interesting and challenging examples collected over the course of several years in doing research on explanation.


  • Matthew Horridge, University of Manchester
  • Bijan Parsia, University of Manchester
  • Ulrike Sattler, University of Manchester
  • Thomas Schneider, University of Manchester

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