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README.md

Deze repository is een onderdeel van het initiatief Open Standaarden voor Linkende Organisaties (OSLO). Meer informatie is terug te vinden op de OSLO productpagina.

Deze repository bevat de source code voor een conversie tool die UML diagrammen, opgesteld in Enterprise Architect, omzet naar het Resource Description Framework (RDF). Deze tool wordt gebruikt om de RDF specificaties die gepubliceerd worden op https://data.vlaanderen.be/ te genereren, maar kan ook lokaal geïnstalleerd worden voor testing en hergebruik.

Enterprise Architect RDF Conversion Tool

This project was created as part of the OSLO² (Github, Vlaanderen.be) initiative by the Flemish Government. The OSLO² project aims to achieve a solid standard for data exchange between (local) governments. These data exchange formats are created as RDF vocabularies (or ontologies), following the principles of the Linked Data movement.

This tool provides an automatic way to create ontologies from an Enterprise Architect (a commonly used UML modelling tool) project that has the proper format.

An example is available here.

Building & Running

Building requires Maven and Java (JDK) to be installed.

mvn clean package
cd target
java -jar <jarfile> --help

Typical usage (for more options/commands, use --help):

# Converts a diagram in an EA project to a RDF ontology (in the Turtle format).
# Any ERROR or WARNING log statements should be adressed before using the generated ontology.
java -jar <jarfile> convert --diagram <diagramName> --config <configFile> --input <EA project file> --output <turtle output file>

# Converts a diagram in a tab separated value file listing the hierarchy, datatypes and more.
java -jar <jarfile> tsv --diagram <diagramName> --config <configFile> --input <EA project file> --output <turtle output file>

Conversion Conventions

Due to the mismatch between UML and RDF, there are some constraints that must be followed and some metadata that should be specified. This metadata is presented in the form of tags assigned to the elements in the EA project. The configuration specified when running the tool determines how these tags are converted into RDF.

Tag values are limited to 256 characters, to get around this limitation, you can use the value NOTE to indicate tag note should be used as a value.

The specific tags used for the OSLO² project are listed here.

All tags listed below can be customised through the configuration, see below.

Package

A package is mapped to an owl:Ontology, each element specified in the ontology is assumed to be specified in the ontology.

Tags:

  • baseURI: The base URI for each element defined in this package (eg: http://example.org/ns#).
  • (optional) baseURIabbrev: The preferred abbreviated form of the baseURI, used to generate the preferred namespace prefix as well as turtle prefixes. (Eg: ex)
  • (optional) ignore: A boolean flag that will make the tool ignore this package and anything defined inside it. (Eg: true)
  • (optional) ontologyURI: The URI of the corresponding owl:Ontology. Defaults to baseURI minus the last character (eg: http://example.org/ns).

Class, DataType & Enumeration

A class, datatype or enumeration is mapped to an owl:Class.

Enumerations are restricted to one of the specified values using owl:oneOf.

Tags:

  • (optional) ignore: A boolean flag that will make the tool ignore this element, its attributes and connectors (eg: true).
  • (optional) literal: A boolean flag to indicate whether this element represents a literal type. Reflected in the type of the properties referring to this element. (Defaults to false.)
  • (optional) name: The string used to complete the URI for this element. If not specified, the name of the class/datatype will be used. (Eg: specifying Canine as name on a class called Dog will result in the URI http://example.org/ns#Canine.)
  • (optional) package: The name of the package (representing an ontology) that should define the translations for the externally defined class. Defaults to the name of the package in which this element is defined. More details below.
  • (optional) uri: The URI of the externally defined class, this will take preference over the baseURI/name combo. Eg: http://example.org/ns/special#Canine.

Attribute

Attributes are mapped to rdf:Property, owl:DatatypeProperty or owl:ObjectProperty.

Tags:

  • (optional) domain: The URI of the domain for this property (overriding the automatically derived one).
  • (optional) ignore: A boolean flag that will make the tool ignore this property (eg: true).
  • (optional) literal: Only useful combined when with the range tag, indicates whether the range is a literal (defaults to false)
  • (optional) name: The string used to complete the URI for this element. If not specified, the name of the attribute will be used. (Eg: canine-name.)
  • (optional) package: The name of the package (representing an ontology) that should define this property. Defaults to the package of the class/datatype/enumeration in which this attribute is specified. More details below.
  • (optional) parentURI: the full URI of any property this property should be a subProperty of. (Eg: https://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#label)
  • (optional) range: The URI of the range for this property (overriding the automatically derived one). Use of this tag will result in a owl:ObjectProperty being generated.
  • (optional) uri: The complete URI to use, this will take preference over the baseURI/name combo. Eg: http://example.org/ns/special#canine-name.

The datatype of the attribute will be mapped to (first match wins):

  • One of the supported primitive XSD/RDF/RDFS types if the datatype is Boolean, Date, DateTime, Double, Duration,HTML, Int, Integer, LangString, Literal, Month, MonthDay, String, Time, URI, Year or YearMonth
  • The class (or datatype) whose name matches the datatype

Connector

A generalization connector will be converted into a rdfs:subClassOf triple. An association or aggregation connector will be converted into a owl:ObjectProperty. Properties follow the direction of the label associated with the connector, or if these are not present, the direction of the connector.

Connectors can be defined between elements from different packages, so it is not always clear to which package (= ontology) they belong.

Tags:

  • package: the name of the package (representing an ontology) that should define this property. Not required if uri is specified. Defaults to guessing this based on the connected elements. More details below.
  • (optional) domain: The URI of the domain for this property (overriding the automatically derived one).
  • (optional) ignore: A boolean flag that will make the tool ignore this property (eg: true).
  • (optional) name: The string used to complete the URI for this element. If not specified, the name of the attribute will be used. (Eg: petPicture.)
  • (optional) parentURI: the full URI of any property this property should be a subProperty of. (Eg: http://xmlns.com/foaf/spec/#term_depiction)
  • (optional) range: The URI of the range for this property (overriding the automatically derived one).
  • (optional) uri: The complete URI to use, this will take preference over the baseURI/name combo. Eg: http://example.org/ns/special#petPicture.

Specifying Packages

Transforming simple models to RDF is straightforward. This becomes more complicated once multiple vocabularies interact. For example, we could define a new attribute on an externally defined class. In this case we do not want to include the definition of the class itself in our ontology. On the other hand, we could want to include additional translations of that class.

Each section below describes what gets exported to the RDF file when running this tool. There are 3 options:

  • An internal, active term: the term is defined by us, in the diagram being exported. This means all information should be outputted. This uses the internalMapping from the configuration.
  • An external term: the term is externally defined and reused by us, we may want to add some additional information to it, such as a translation. This uses the externalMapping from the configuration.
  • An nonactive term: the term is defined in a different diagram. In this case nothing will be outputted.

Class, Datatype & Enumeration

The term is seen as an internal, active term when:

  • there is no uri tag present
  • the element is defined in, or has its package tag set to the package being exported

It is considered an external term when:

  • there is a uri tag present
  • the element is defined in, or has its package tag set to the package being exported

The term is seen as an nonactive term when:

  • the element is not defined in the package being exported

Attributes & Connectors

The term is seen as an internal, active term when:

  • there is no uri tag present
  • the package tag (or its default value) refers to the package being exported

It is considered an external term when:

  • there is a uri tag present
  • the package tag (or its default value) refers to the package being exported

Association Classes

Note: because association classes exists in UML only and poorly reflect the resulting RDF, it is discouraged to use them.

In UML, connectors can have a association class to identify information being tracked on the association between 2 classes. In RDF this is represented by simply having the association class being put in the middle of the connecting property. Taking the reverse properties into account, this effectively forms 4 separate properties instead of one.

Any connector that has an association class should prefix all tags with source-, source-rev-, target- and target-rev-. Tags of the first form (eg: source-label-en) will relate to the property connecting the starting element with the association class. Likewise, the second form will relate to the property connecting the association class with the the source element. Starting and ending elements are defined by the direction of the label of the connector.

As an example, the following diagram:

Model

would be converted as follows:

Model

If not all properties are desired in the conversion, they should be marked using the ignore tag (eg: source-rev-ignore should be set to true).

Configuration

The configuration file is a JSON file that affects how the UML diagram is converted. Broadly, it specifies the following aspects:

  • the prefixes used in a converted diagram
  • the mappings of class/attribute/connector/... tags to properties
    • on the level of the ontology (= a diagram)
    • for the terms present in and defined in the package of the diagram being converted
    • for the terms present in but not defined in the package of the diagram being converted
  • overrides for the builtin tags (documented below)

A typical configuration is listed at the end of this section.

Prefixes

Prefixes are straightforward:

{
  prefixes: {
    rdf: "http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#",
    rdfs: "http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#",
    owl: "http://www.w3.org/2002/07/owl#"
  }
  ...
}

Mappings

The mappings are specified in 3 blocks, each affecting a different part of the conversion:

  • ontologyMappings specify which tags to process on the level of each package, these tags will end up as properties on the owl:Ontology instance.
  • internalMappings affect the classes, attributes... that are defined in the package of the diagram being converted and are shown on the diagram.
  • externalMappings affect the classes that are not defined in the package of the diagram being converted, but are shown on the diagram.

Each block consists of a list of mappings. Each mapping is specified as follows:

  • tag: the name of the tag as used in EA that contains the value to be mapped.

  • property: the RDF property (URI) to which the value will be mapped.

  • mandatory: a boolean determining whether the tool should provide a warning if no value is specfied.

  • type: the URI of the datatype to be used in the RDF for the mapped value. Defaults to http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#langString. You can use http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#Resource to convert the values to links instead of literals.

  • lang: the language of rdf:langString value.

  • fallbackTags: in case no entry was found for the tag of this mapping, the tool will try again with each of the tags specified in this list (in order), until a value is found.

    { ontologyMappings: [ { tag: "issued", property: "http://purl.org/dc/terms/issued", mandatory: true, type: "http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema#date" } ], internalMappings: [ { tag: "label-nl", property: "http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#label", mandatory: true, lang: "nl" }, { tag: "pref-label-nl", property: "http://www.w3.org/2004/02/skos/core#prefLabel", fallbackTags: ["label-nl"] mandatory: true, lang: "nl" } ], externalMappings: [ ], ... }

Builtin Tags

All tags defined above can in fact be customised through the configuration. The snippet belows shows the format to use in the configuration and each default value.

{
  prefixes: {
    ...
  },
  builtinTags: {
    LOCALNAME: "name",
    EXTERNAL_URI: "uri",
    IGNORE: "ignore",
    DEFINING_PACKAGE: "package",
    SUBPROPERTY_OF: "parentURI",
    DOMAIN: "domain",
    RANGE: "range",
    IS_LITERAL: "literal",
    PACKAGE_BASE_URI: "baseURI",
    PACKAGE_BASE_URI_ABBREVIATION: "baseURIabbrev",
    PACKAGE_ONTOLOGY_URI: "ontologyURI"
  },
  internalMappings: [
    ...
  ]
}

Example configuration

# The ontology will have a title and (xsd:date) date attribute.
# Newly defined terms will have a "nl"-typed label, pref-label and comment.
# In case no "pref-label-nl" tag exists, the value from "label-nl" will be used.
# Existing terms will only get a "nl" translations.
# The "mandatory" key determines whether the tool warns for missing values.
{
  prefixes: {
    rdf: "http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#",
    rdfs: "http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#",
    owl: "http://www.w3.org/2002/07/owl#"
  },
  ontologyMappings: [
    {
      tag: "title-nl",
      property: "http://purl.org/dc/terms/title",
      mandatory: true,
      lang: "nl"
    },
    {
      tag: "issued",
      property: "http://purl.org/dc/terms/issued",
      mandatory: true,
      type: "http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema#date"
    }
  ],
  internalMappings: [
    {
      tag: "label-nl",
      property: "http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#label",
      mandatory: true,
      lang: "nl"
    },
    {
      tag: "pref-label-nl",
      property: "http://www.w3.org/2004/02/skos/core#prefLabel",
      fallbackTags: ["label-nl"]
      mandatory: true,
      lang: "nl"
    },
    {
      tag: "definition-nl",
      property: "http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#comment",
      mandatory: true,
      lang: "nl"
    }
  ],
  externalMappings: [
    {
      tag: "label-nl",
      property: "http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#label",
      lang: "nl"
    }
  ]
}