OWL for the novice: A logical perspective

Jeff Z. Pan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Citations (Scopus)


In order to implement the Semantic Web vision, the W3C has produced a standard ontology language OWL (Web Ontology Language), which is largely based on Description Logics. OWL facilitates greater machine interpretability of Web content than that supported by XML, RDF, and RDF Schema (RDFS) by providing additional vocabulary along with a formal semantics. In this chapter, we aim at introducing some basic notions of OWL from a logical perspective. After presenting OWL in the context of the Semantic Web, this chapter will introduce the reader to the syntax and semantics of OWL and summarize the relations between RDF and OWL, in terms of syntax and semantics. Furthermore, it discusses the following questions that new users of OWL often ask: (i) What can OWL ontologies be used for? (ii) Are there any recent extensions of OWL? (iii) Are there any standard query languages that we can use to query OWL ontologies?

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSemantic Web
Subtitle of host publicationRevolutionizing Knowledge Discovery in the Life Sciences
EditorsChristopher J.O. Baker, Kei-Hoi Cheung
PublisherSpringer US
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9780387484389
ISBN (Print)0387484361, 9780387484365
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007


  • Description Logics
  • extensions of OWL
  • Ontology
  • OWL
  • query language


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