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Subject: Paper on EDXL_Reference Information Model

Hi All,

This week in the EDXL_HAVE issues discussion Sean Barker had an issue 
which asks for an ontologically consistent basis for the purpose of 
better interoperability from an IT manager's viewpoint.

I should note that this was only one of several well thought out 
issues from Sean that we tackled in our first session on resolving 
these issues from the Public Review.

Among others' replies, I noted that we have had a proposal on the 
table for a while now to produce an EDXL Reference Information Model 
which is envisioned to provide that basis, and provide a sound 
conceptual basis for the entire EDXL family of specificatons.

I have been collecting materials related to this task for the last 
couple of years, and this collection has recently been increased by 
the addition of the SOA-RM TC's Service Oriented Architecture 
Reference Model.

Sean's suggestion was the first external request for such a thing, 
and it is something that I have been waiting for as a signal that the 
time is right to bring this up again. So I wrote a first draft of a 
short "Purpose" paper on what I think this thing should be and what 
it is for. I have attached that initial effort, and I would like you 
to give it a read.

I think we should put it on the agenda in the next month or so.

(Read from here on only if you are interested since this is 
additional discussion only.)

I consider the attached document to be a starting point only. I want 
to get the conversation renewed in the TC before we receive the next 
submission from the expert group for some set of Situational 
Awareness factors in an EDXL scope because my own investigations of 
SAW (the common acronym for Situational AWareness--not the slasher 
movie series ;-) ) have shown that the overall scope is far too wide 
for a single EDXL specification.

Note: I confined my discussion in the attached document to our own 
EDXL history and context, but if we take this up then I will strongly 
suggest that our work carefully align with and use two external 

1. The CIDOC Conceptual Reference Model (CRM) 
http://cidoc.ics.forth.gr/ from the International Council of Museums. 
This is expressed solely as an RDF Schema--a kind of ontology, but 
short of a full OWL-DL (Web Ontology Language-Description Logic) 
representation. To do this requires a translation of some of their 
terms into an XML Schema representation. This specification has been 
developed over 15 years now and serves as the basis for the 
consistent description of human artifacts, including the base 
definition of the term "Artifact" with which we would need to be 
consistent. In addition to making an XML Schema translation of some 
of their terms, we would need to add only our own context to the 
concept of artifact--EM IT artifacts, and EM ValueListTypes as 
referenced IT artifacts.

2. The European Union Open Architecture and Spatial Data 
Infrastructure for Risk Management, from the ORCHESTRA Project 
http://www.eu-orchestra.org/documents.shtml This is explicitly 
related to Emergency Management and specifies an ontological 
structure with which we can align and which is also already committed 
to the OpenGeospatial Consortium standards, so our OASIS GML profile 
will fit.

As a boost to the notion that we should specifically frame this 
specification as an XML vocabulary AND an OWL-DL ontology, I have 
already completed one such representation of an OASIS Committee 
Specification in this way in the HumanMarkup TC before it closed last 

I would, of course, like to go one step further and adopt the SOA-RM 
and classify the EDXL_RIM as largely based on the SOA-RM as a 
Reference Architecture, similar to the Global Justice Reference 
Architecture, which Tom can describe more fully.

I mention all of this because I constrained the attached paper 
specifically to EDXL contextual issues with which we are already 
familiar as a group.

Rex Brooks
President, CEO
Starbourne Communications Design
GeoAddress: 1361-A Addison
Berkeley, CA 94702
Tel: 510-849-2309


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