PhiloSURFical

What
Tool for browsing a philosophical text, taking advantage of a map of the concepts relevant to the text.

PhiloSURFical is a prototype application built to experiment some functionalities which are enabled by the growing Semantic Web: data are distributed, but can be coherently recollected by means of their semantic description. It’s like if the whole Web could be treated as a giant database: we can query it in interesting ways, so to dynamically reorganize it depending on the context we are looking from.

The PhiloSURFical application is being prototyped with Wittgenstein’s Tractatus Logico Philosophicus and it allows the navigation of a semantically enhanced version of the text. By relying on an ontology created to describe the philosophical domain at various levels of abstraction, users can benefit from multiple perspectives on the text and on related resources. For example, they can reorganize the same text according to the relevance of a single metadata, e.g. the concept of “logical-independence” ; they can query the knowledge base or other repositories in the Semantic Web, such as the DBpedia, by choosing an object of interest (i.e. a topic) and using it to trigger a theoretical narrative (i.e. meta-historical), a historical narrative , or a geographical one . This is achieved by using simultaneously the knowledge encoded in the ontology, an initial knowledge base of resources and metadata built by a philosophy teacher, and the SPARQL query language to gather information from other sources in the Semantic Web.

Corpus
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus

Who
Michele Pasin

Where
http://philosurfical.open.ac.uk/

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Agora

What
Enrich the Wittgenstein ontology inherited from the DISCOVERY project with further classes and properties.

In AGORA’s semantic linking experiment carried out by CNR-ILIESI and UIB-WAB a subset of the content (scholarly articles, monographs) will be linked to related data sets (editions of texts, manuscripts) most of which are already available in the Philosource Federation. The semantic linking will connect the digital objects with ontological classes that express the most important domain concepts. The experiment’s goal is to enable a novel way of building, querying and browsing a knowledge network and to assess its suitability as a collaborative research tool as well as a learning tool. The resulting RDF graphs will be published on the web and harvested by the Federation Portal.

In the first 18 months, UIB-WAB has enriched the Wittgenstein domain ontology inherited from the DISCOVERY project with further classes and properties. It has continued with populating it with instances, especially in the secondary sources and subject domains. The backbone for UIB-WAB’s ontology work is its transcriptions of both primary and secondary sources in XML TEI, from which OWL files are extracted via XSLT stylesheets. The OWL files can be visualized in the ontology browser SwickyNotes which permits interlinked browsing of texts and related ontologies.

Corpus
Nachlass (WAB 5000)

Who
WAB

Where
http://www.project-agora.org/experiments/semantic-linking/

Wittgenstein ontology

What
Wittgenstein ontology, exemplifying some of its basic concepts and functions.

A first version of WAB’s Wittgenstein ontology, exemplifying some of its basic concepts and functions (e.g. interlinking of primary source class instances on the one hand and philosophical subject class instances on the other), was produced by WAB in cooperation with Christian Morbidoni (Philospace/SwickyNotes) and the consortium of the EU funded DISCOVERY project in the period 2006-09. It was developed further within the framework of the NordForsk funded JNUVWAB project (2008-11), and is today continued in the EU funded projects AGORA (2011-13) and DM2E (2012-14), and the Norwegian National Library funded project DIGITALE FULLTEKSTARKIV (DF) (2012-13) at the University of Bergen Library. For an early short slides overview of the ontology’s classes and relations and for application samples, see Alois Pichler’s presentation.

Contributors: Christian Erbacher (WAB; design, dissemination), Rune Jensen Falch (WAB; semantic markup of secondary sources, dissemination), Øyvind Liland Gjesdal (WAB; XSLT, RDF, OWL, dissemination), Heinz Wilhelm Krüger (WAB; semantic markup of secondary sources, semantic markup of Big Typescript complex, dissemination), Alois Pichler (WAB; all tasks, coordination), Deirdre Smith (WAB; semantic markup of secondary sources, semantic markup of Lecture on Ethics complex, semantic markup of Brown Book complex, dissemination), Mark Addis (Univ. of Aarhus and Birmingham City University; philosophy of mathematics terms, dissemination), Hans Biesenbach (author of “Anspielungen und Zitate in den Schriften Ludwig Wittgensteins”; Wittgenstein’s references to other authors and works), Steen Brock (Univ. of Aarhus; philosophy of psychology terms, dissemination), James M. Fielding (Univ. of Paris I; consultancy), James Klagge (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia; consultancy, subject terms), Jakub Macha (Masaryk University; consultancy, dissemination), Christian Morbidoni (author of Philospace and SwickyNotes; consultancy), Špela Vidmar (University of Ljubljana; semantic markup of On Certainty and Remarks on Colour manuscripts), Amélie Zöllner-Weber (author of “Figurenontologie”; consultancy, dissemination). Responsible editor and coordinator: Alois Pichler.

Corpus

  • wittgenstein.owl (last changed 2013, June 25; CCPL BY-NC-SA): Intended primarily for the browsing of Wittgenstein’s writings (with Wittgenstein Source in focus) and their internal and external relations, including bibliographic metadata such as relations between Nachlass sources and “works”, references to persons and works of others, datings of the single remarks, and also text genetic paths. The ontology also permits interlinked browsing of relevant secondary sources, stemming mainly from the ALWS Kirchberg Wittgenstein symposia and WAB’s own publication series (see http://wab.uib.no/agora-alws/ and http://wab.uib.no/agora-wab/), including browsing of semantic metadata. The ontology is produced via XSLT extraction from XML-TEI(P5) versions of the source materials.
  • wittgenstein.owl (last changed 2013, November 1; CCPL BY-NC-SA): The same as above, with the following modification: The namespaces “:scho”, “:baseinst” and “:” are moved to resolvable URIs at http://purl.org/wittgensteinsource/.

Who
WAB

Where
http://wab.uib.no/wab_philospace.page