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Specifying Role Interaction in Concept Languages

Philipp Hanschke
DFKI, DFKI Research Reports (RR), Vol. 92-37, 1992.


The KL-ONE concept language provides role-value maps (RVMs) as a concept forming operator that compares sets of role fillers. This is a useful means to specify structural properties of concepts. Recently, it has been shown that concept languages providing RVMs together with some other common concept-forming operators induce an undecidable subsumption problem. Thus, RVMs have been restricted to chainings of functional roles as, for example, in CLASSIC. Although this restricted RVM is still a useful operator, one would like to have additional means to specify interaction of general roles. The present paper investigates two concept languages for that purpose. The first one provides concept forming operators that generalize the restricted RVM in a different direction. Unfortunately, it turns out that this language also has an undecidable subsumption problem. The second formalism allows to specify structural properties w.r.t. roles without using general equality and is equipped with (complete) decision procedures for its associated reasoning problems.