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The task forces are currently expected to perform their activities on the OWLED Wiki. There are pages for the task forces in general, as well as pages for each task force. All members of the OWLED community are strongly encouraged to contribute to the wiki.


A core rationale of the OWLED workshop series is to align the state of the deployed art of OWL with widespread and critical user needs. At the first OWLED, participants identified a set of features that met significant user needs and were deemed reasonable for implementors. By the second OWLED, these features were rolled into an extension of OWL called OWL 1.1 for which there was significant implemention experience. The participants decided to submit the OWL 1.1 specifications as a W3C member submission and pursue a W3C working group to standardize OWL 1.1.

By the third OWLED, OWL 1.1 was an accepted W3C member submission and movement toward a possible working group was underway. At this point, stewardship of OWL 1.1 could no longer be a focus of OWLED workshops. In order to guide future standardization (both de facto and de jure) work, the participants at OWLED requested that task forces be created to produce specifications and reports for discussion and ratification at subsequent OWLED meetings.


There are two sorts of task forces distinguished by their expected outcomes. An OWLED meeting can request that a task force produce a specification suitable for standardization if the participants feel that an area is mature enough (both technically and in terms of user needs and understanding) that they are confident that the task force can produce by the next meeting a spec with enough experience and consensus behind it to be appropriate for, e.g., a W3C member submission. An OWLED meeting can also request that a task force produce a report or proposal to be a basis of discussion for at the next OWLED. These categories are intended to be suggestive rather than rigid and to reflect the general consensus and understanding of the OWLED meeting.

Specification suitable for standardization

Requesting a specification is intended to be analogous to the agreement to work toward OWL 1.1 expressed at OWLED 2005 with a result akin to the state of OWL 1.1 at the time of OWLED 2006. That is, the goal is a set of specifications of such quality and backed by implementation experience and user approval sufficient to serve as a foundation of a formal standardization effort. Typically, a specification will only be requested if the participants have reasonable confidence that their is broad (if tacit) consensus on a technical design.

It is reasonable for OWLED participants to expect:

It is reasonable for task force members to expect:


There were several areas that were of great interest to OWLED participants but for which there was not concensus that standardization was (yet) appropriate. One example was "rules". Many user papers identified some sort of "rules" as a requirement for a future specification, but there was no clear understanding of what sort of rules (exactly) were wanted and feasible. What was lacking were sufficient material and understanding to make an informed choice. That report is intended to gather up enough information to allow participants at the subsequent OWLED to make effective decisions about how to proceed. A different sort of case is that of the Education task force, where the output would be materials of general use to the OWL user community.

Reports may include:

It would perfectly reasonable for a report to say that an area is not ready for standardization.

It is reasonable for OWLED participants to expect the report to include:

It is reasonable for task force members to expect:


Each task force was appointed at least one "point person" who agreed to be responsible to the group for the work. However, the point person is expected to solicit and accept help as needed and offered in order to do the work. The OWL 1.1 Google Code site (especially the issues list and the wiki -- see the coordination page), webont.org, and the public-owl-dev@w3.org mailing lists are the primary venues for task force business. There is also a coordination list for task force leaders: taskforces@lists.webont.org. Interest in participation may be directed there, or to individual point people.

Since time at OWLED is limited, each task force should make its work products available in "final" form at least one month and preferably two months before the meeting. Of course, the task forces, especially for specifications, should be making an ongoing effort at outreach.

The task force coordinator and the OWLED general chair (in consultation, if necessary, with the steering committee) determine the precise schedule and form of task force presentations at any given OWLED. They shall balance the progress of the task force, the submissions and expressed interest of attendees, and the likeliness of successful decisions being made on the basis of task force work in determining the schedule.

Current task forces

At OWLED 2007, the following task forces were requested (point people in parentheses):

This page maintained by Bijan Parsia