Rules and Guidelines for Semantic Concepts

Kees Woestenenk, 2012-04-04

Rules and Guidelines for Semantic Concepts are provisionary and may be changed. The current list is taken from the Documentation of Semantic Concepts version 2, with some textual adaptions.

Rules or Guidelines that correspond with Rules and Guidelins of NTA 8611 are indicated as such (e.g. (NTA 8611 - TL3)).

Administrative Rules and Guidelines

  • A01: Version number. The version number is updated after changes of the Concept status or the Concept definition.
  • A02: Date. The date is updated after changes of the Concept status, the Concept description (Names, Descriptions), or the Concept definition.

Lexical Rules and Guidelines

  • L01: Character set. Characters are coded according to UTF-8.
  • L02: Character set. Characters that have a special meaning in databases and applications , such as (", \) are represented by their original code.
  • L03: Language. The language is indicated by a notation of the format xx-XX, in which xx is the abbreviation of the language according to ISO 639 and XX the abbreviation of a country according to ISO 3166. For example, nl-NL (Dutch Netherlands) en-US (American English). For some special languages the following notations are used:
    • International English: en-IN
    • Latin: la-LA
    • Express: ex-EX
    • IFC: if-IF
  • L04: Text layout. Texts are without any layout (Bold, italic, underlined) (NTA 8611 - TL5).
  • L05: Name. A term is a common indication of a Concept, some terms are generally common, others only within a certain context, or regionally bound.
  • L06: Name. A term consists of one or more words.
  • L07: Name. A term starts in general with an capital character, unless this is not according to the official spelling, such as with millimetre.
  • L08: Name. Nouns as terms are in general in singular, unless this is not normal practice (NTA 8611 - TL3).
  • L09: Name. Verbs as term are in general not conjugated.
  • L10: Name. Names have their own identity.
  • L11: Name. Three kinds of Names are distinguished: FULLNAME (in full length), SHORTNAME (abbreviation) and LEXEME (stem).
  • L12: Concept name. A Concept may have more than one Name, and a Name can be assigned to different Concepts.
  • L13: Concept name. A Concept name can be assigned as preferred for a certain Concept.
  • L14: Concept name. Nameless Concepts should be avoided, but may occur in a certain language.
  • L15: Unit name. Units are indicated preferably with their abbreviation (SHORTNAME). For powers no superscript is used, assembled and broken Units are represented as general text, using . for multiplication, / for division and brackets for groupings.
  • L16: Description. Descriptions and Comments semantically correspond to Names and for which similar Lexical Rules and Guidelines apply.
  • L17: Description. The Description refers to the Concept of which it is derived and then adds the specific characteristics for that Concept.
  • L18: Description. The Description corresponds semantically with the Formal definition.
  • L19: Illustration. An Illustration has a file format that can be read by browsers, such as JPEG and PNG.

Rules and Guidelines Specialization

  • S01: Specialization. All Concepts are hierarchically grouped in a Specialization structure.
  • S02: Specialization. A Supertype is a generalization of a Concept, a Subtype is a specialization of a Concept.
  • S03: Specialization. Each Concept has one or more Supertypes, except the Concept that forms the top of the hierarchy.
  • S04: Specialization. A Concept has zero or more Subtypes.
  • S05: Specialization. A Concept is distinguished from its Supertype
    • by one ore more Defining attributes, or
    • by a Value domain of Defining attributes that is more limited, or
    • by attributes that are replaced by their Subtypes.
  • S06: Specialization. A Subtype may narrow down the Value domain of a quantifiable Semantic characteristic.
  • S07: Specialization. A Concept with more than one Supertype inherits the Defining attributes of all of its Supertypes, in which attributes of the same type are merged, including (with Semantic characteristics) their Value domains.
  • S08: Specialization. The number of specialization levels in a Specialization structure is unlimited. For each specialization step the number of possible instantiations decreases, each instantiation is, however, also an instance of the Supertype of the Concept.
  • S09: Grouping. Groupings are collections of Concepts which fall under a common denominator without adding a discriminator. A Grouping is represented as a Specialization.
  • S10: Property specialization. A Property that is specific for a Concept to which its is linked is regarded as a Specialization of the more General data.
  • S11: Measure specialization. Measures with similar Units that can be converted to each other, are grouped as a Specialization of a General measure without Units.
  • S12: Unit specialization. Units that are scaled by a prefix are grouped as a Specialization of General units without a prefix.
  • S13: Subject/Activity specialization. Subjects or Activities can be ordered according to different Specialization hierarchies.
  • S14: Subject/Activity specialization. A Defining attribute that is used as a discriminator in a Specialization may be implicit, in such a way that it does not need to be defined as a distinct Property with its own Value domain.
  • S15: Subject/Activity specialization. An Abstract supertype is a Subject or Activity with a Concept definition that is functional of nature, in which the Composition in Production components or activities is not considered.
  • S16: Subject/Activity specialization. If a Subject or Activity can be abstracted as a Functional Concept then this Concept has to be an Abstract supertype of that Subject or that Activity so that it can be used in a Performance concept - Technical solution combination.
  • S17: Subject/Activity specialization. With Specialization Defining attributes of the Concept definition are transferred to (inherited by) the Subtypes of a Subject or Activity. With inheritance - and at instantiating - inherited Concepts may be replaced by a Subtype, Values of inherited Properties may be changed and inherited Concepts that are valid but not relevant for the Subtype may be discarded.
  • S18: Subject/Activity specialization. With Specialization Defining attributes may not be Supertypes of Defining attributes of the Supertype of the Subject or Activity.

Rules and Guidelines Definition

  • D01: Definition. A Concept is a Semantic characteristic if it is used in the definition of another Concept. A Concept is a Semantic concept if it is defined by means of other Concepts.
  • D02: Definition. A Defining attribute relates to Semantic characteristics when qualifying and possibly quantifying a Property, Composition or Interaction.
  • D03: Definition. The Concept definition of a Concept consists of the set of Defining attributes.
  • D04: Subject/Activity definition. The Concept definition of a Subject or Activity is subdivided into Interactions, Components and Properties.
  • D05: Subject/Activity definition. A Production component is a Component that as a result of an Activity will be part of a Subject or Activity, an Inherent component is a Component that is not in one way or another attached to a Subject or Activity by means of a process, an Inherent component will as a Subject directly be associated with a Subject.
  • D06: Subject/Activity definition. In the Concept definition of a Subject or Activity double associations of Subjects through Inherent parts or through Production components should be avoided.
  • D07: Subject/Activity definition. Activities involved in the production of a Subject are regarded as a Component.
  • D08: Subject/Activity definition. Interaction in the Concept definition describes the Activities in which a Subject or Activity is typically involved.
  • D09: Subject/Activity definition. An Input activity is an Activity that has an impact on a Subject and on which the Subject is supposed to react. An Output activity is an Activity of the Subject itself.
  • D10: Subject/Activity definition. A Property describes a quality of a Subject or Activity.
  • D11: Subject/Activity definition. A Performance is a Property derived from an Output activity, as a reaction on an Input activity.
  • D12: Subject/Activity definition. The cardinality of a Component in a Concept definition is expressed by means of a distinct Property.
  • D13: Subject/Activity definition. A Defining attribute of a Subject or Activity which is only needed for its Specification can be added to instances of the Subject or the Activity and should not be part of the Concept definition.

Rules and Guidelines Concepts

  • C01: Conformity. Something is an Instance of a Concept when it has a set of attributes that correspond with the attributes that form the Formal definition of the Concept. If the attribute of the Concept is quantified then also the value of the corresponding attribute of the Instance has to correspond. An Instance is in general more specific than the Concept by extra attributes or by quantification of not quantified attributes of the Concept.
  • C02: Semantic concept. A Semantic concept is a Concept that is composed according to the Rules and Guidelines of this documentation.
  • C03: Semantic characteristic. A Semantic characteristic is used for the Concept definition of other Concepts.
  • C04: Property. A Property is an Semantic characteristic that is used for the Concept definition of Subjects and Activities.
  • C05: Property. A Property as a Concept is a Property template that only gets meaning when attached to another Concept.
  • C06: Property. A Simple data is a Property of which the content consists of Values and Measures.
  • C07: Property. A Compound data is a Property composed of Simple data.
  • C08: Property. A Property may have zero or more Values per Measure.
  • C09: Property. A Value can be directly associated with a Property or indirectly when using the Property for the Concept definition of a Concept.
  • C10: Property. If a Property contains directly associated Values then the Values used in a Formal definition will be a selection of these.
  • C11: Property. If a Property in the Concept definition of a Concept has no Value then the Value will be a parametric part of the Specification of instances of the Concept.
  • C12: Measure. A Measure is a Semantic characteristic that is used for scaling the Values in Property.
  • C13: Measure. A Measure has 0 or 1 Units.
  • C14: Measure. The Measure: Dimension 1, without Unit, is used for Values not used in mathematics, such as Lexical values, or as a factor for Values used in mathematics.
  • C15: Unit. A Unit is a Semantic characteristic that forms the scaling factor in a Measure for scaling Values in Property.
  • C16: Value. A Value contains the content of a Property and is related to a Property through a Measure by which the content is interpreted or scaled.
  • C17: Value. A Value of the type TEXT is a Lexical value, consisting of text, and is therefore language bound. A Value of this type is either descriptive, or an Enumeration. The value domain of an Enumeration is mostly externally defined.
  • C18: Value. Values of the type INTEGER and REAL are whole or fractured numbers that can be used in mathematics. For numeric values a lower or upper tolerance may apply, given as a percentage or as an absolute value.
  • C19: Value. Values of the type BOOLEAN and LOGICAL are Enumerations with possible values for BOOLEAN: TRUE or FALSE and for LOGICAL: TRUE, FALSE or UNDEFINED.
  • C20: Subject. A Subject is a tangible Concept, material as well as immaterial.
  • C21: Activity. An Activity is a time dependent Concept, perceptible as event or as changes caused by it.