The 12th International Semantic Web Conference
and the 1st Australasian Semantic Web Conference
21-25 October 2013, Sydney, Australia

The Empirical Robustness of Description Logic Classification

Rafael S. Gonçalves, Nicolas Matentzoglu, Bijan Parsia and Uli Sattler
In spite of the recent renaissance in lightweight description logics (DLs), many prominent DLs, such as that underlying the Web Ontology Language (OWL), have high worst case complexity for their key inference services. Modern reasoners have a large array of optimization, tuned calculi, and implementation tricks that allow them to perform very well in a variety of application scenarios, even though the complexity results ensure that they will perform poorly for some inputs. For users, the key question is how often they will encounter those pathological inputs in practice, that is, how robust are reasoners. We attempt to determine this question for classification of existing ontologies as they are found on the Web. It is a fairly common user task to examine ontologies published on theWeb as part of their development process. Thus, the robustness of reasoners in this scenario is both directly interesting and provides some hints toward answering the broader question. From our experiments, we show that the current crop of OWL reasoners, in collaboration, is very robust against the Web.
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