User Centered Ontology for Sri Lankan Agriculture Domain

A.I. Walisadeera, A. Ginige, G.N. Wikramanayake

Abstract— People working in the agriculture domain in Sri Lanka are affected by not being able to get vital information required to support their domain related activities in a timely manner. Some of the required information can be found in government websites, agriculture department leaflets, and through radio and television programs on agriculture. Required information from these knowledge sources is hard to find due to its unstructured, incomplete, varied formats, and lack of targeted delivery methods. Thus finding the right information within the context in which information is required in a timely manner is a challenge. The information and knowledge needs to be provided not only in a structured and complete way, but also in a context-specific manner. For instance, farmers need agricultural information within the context of location of their farm land, their economic condition, their interest and beliefs, and available agricultural equipment. To investigate some of the underlying research challenges an International Collaborative Research Project to develop mobile based information systems for people in developing countries was launched. User centered Ontology was developed as part of this project. Agricultural information has strong local characteristics in relation to climate, culture, history, languages, and local plant varieties. These local characteristics as well as the need to provide information in a context-specific manner made us to develop this user centered Ontology for Sri Lankan Agriculture Domain. Because of the complex nature of the relationships among various concepts, to attenuate the incompleteness of the data, and also to add semantics and background knowledge about the domain we selected an ontological approach that supports description logic to create the knowledge repository. For this we developed a new approach to model the domain knowledge to meet particular access requirements of the users in agriculture domain in Sri Lanka. Through this approach, we have investigated how to create a knowledge repository of agricultural information to respond to user queries taking into account the context in which information is needed by them at various stages of the farming life cycle. The Delphi Method and the OOPS! (web-based tool) were used to validate the ontology. Initial system was trailed with a group of farmers in Sri Lanka. The online knowledge base with a SPARQL endpoint was created to share and reuse the domain knowledge that can be queried based on user context. An end-to-end ontology management system is developed to manage the developed ontology as well as the knowledge base based on the ontology.

Pages: 149 - 155, DOI: 10.1109/ICTER.2014.7083894

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