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The broad application of ontologies as shared terminological knowledge representations is one of the main strategies of the semantic web paradigm. With OWL (Web Ontology Language) there exists now a W3C standard for defining web enabled ontologies which fits in the semantic layering of web languages. Although there are some OWL ontology management solutions available, most of them are complicated to deploy or handle, do not support strategies for collaborative, distributed development of ontologies, are not Open Source or are not available for the most distributed web technologies. Since PHP (http://www.php.net) is at a distance the most distributed web development technology (as regularly confirmed by Netcraft), the semantic web paradigm will probably only be successful in a broad perspective if there are applications and tools available tightly interacting with this language.

The goal of this document is to give an overview on the usage of pOWL which meets this requirement. The aim of pOWL is to deliver an easy-to-deploy and easy-to-use, scalable, PHP and web-based ontology management solution to the Open Source community, which covers the whole ontology lifecycle. Despite the fact that pOWL is still in beta quality stage it is already productively used in several projects. A final production grade version 1.0 will be published October 15th. As a use case, we present the application of pOWL to semantic web content management and how it may be used as a foundation framework for semantic web applications.




Sören Auer
University of Leipzig, Germany
Email: auer@informatik.uni-leipzig.de