Wellen obtains his masters degree


Christopher Wellen successfully submitted his thesis, Ontologies of Cree Hydrography: Formalization and Realization in October 2008.

The Semantic Web will revolutionize the current Web with a new type of metadata called ontologies, which are formal models of concepts computers use to interpret data. Ontologies give computers the ability to, among other things, infer new information from data, disambiguate similar terms, and draw inferences. There has been no attempt to formalize or realize (implement in software) a geospatial ontology with an indigenous people despite influences of language and culture on geographic concepts. This thesis represents the first attempt to do this.
    Research was conducted with the Cree of Quebec. A logical geospatial ontology was developed with Cree concepts, and the resulting ontology was realized in software three different ways and tested with Cree users. Results show that geospatial ontologies developed from Cree geographic concepts have unique design considerations. Cree users were most interested in realization of the ontology as a feature type catalog and uninterested in realization of the ontology as a control on map or attribute responses to user input.

Another success: Chris has joined the University of Toronto as a PhD student. Well done, Chris! Good luck in your new career!