I recently published about my experiences of using Emacs for Ontology building (http://www.russet.org.uk/blog/2161). A fairly niche subject area, but I was did get a couple of responses asking for my code; curiously, it appears that although I started to write this 6 or 7 years ago, even before this working draft was produced, I forgot to ever release it publically. The code is now available on my website.

I have also taken the opportunity to move my versioning to Mercurial for all of my Emacs packages — originally I used Subversion. This is fine, but the servers tend to get deleted over time for projects that are rarely updated. With a DVS, I keep the entire project history on my local machine which is a considerable advantage. This is also available from Google code.

omn-mode is a work in progress. At the moment, I use it to edit with Protege as a visualiser, but it could really do with some additional command line support; for checking syntax in particular, which would allow Emacs to jump to the relevant line; reading Java stack traces, followed by M-x goto-line is all very last century.



  1. An Exercise in Irrelevance » Blog Archive » Some Updates to omn-mode says:

    […] I was not entirely happy with omn-mode, even after recent changes (http://www.russet.org.uk/blog/2185), so I have taken the opportunity to update it a little more. This article most describes some […]

  2. Christoph Lange says:

    Many thanks, Phillip, for omn-mode! The debug support that you reported as missing here almost works for me, thanks to owltools (https://github.com/owlcollab/owltools), a command-line wrapper for the OWL API. With owltools in.omn -o out.owl (or, when importing other ontologies of which you are maintaining local copies, owltools –catalog-xml catalog-v001.xml in.omn -o out.owl) one can conveniently have an OWL Manchester ontology validated (and, e.g., exported as RDF/XML). Just put this into a Makefile and use M-x compile. The only shortcoming is that the output of owltools is not formatted in such a way that Emacs would automatically detect references to source lines.

  3. Phillip Lord says:

    Emacs support for the output could be added (at either end). I’d be happy to take patches to omn-mode.el for this purpose.

    To be honest, though, my interested in having OMN mode as a development environment for ontologies has rather waned. Tawny-OWL fulfils my needs far better. I use omn-mode now largely for viewing the output of tawny!

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