APJIS Asia Pacific Journal of Information Systems

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The Journal for Information Professionals

Asia Pacific Journal of Information Systems (APJIS) is published by the Korea Society
of Management Information Systems (KMIS), which is the largest professional institute
in the field of information systems in Korea.

ISSN 2288-5404 (Print) / ISSN 2288-6818 (Online)

Editor : Sang-Yong Tom Lee

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Date March 2008
Vol. No. Vol. 18 No. 1
DOI
Page 79~96
Title Semantic Process Retrieval with Similarity Algorithms
Author Hong Joo Lee, Mark Klein
Keyword Semantic Business Process, Process Retrieval, Similarity, Semantic Web
Abstract One of the roles of the Semantic Web services is to ute dynamic intra-organizational services including the integration and interoperation of business processes. Since different organizations design their processes differently, the retrieval of similar semantic business processes is necessary in order to support inter-organizational collaborations. Most approaches for finding services that have certain features and support certain business processes have relied on some type of logical reasoning and exact matching. This paper presents our approach of using imprecise matching for expanding results an exact matching engine to query the OWL(Web Ontology Language) MIT Process Handbook. MIT Process Handbook is an electronic repository of best-practice business processes. The Handbook is intended to help people: (1) redesigning organizational processes, (2) inventing new processes, and (3) sharing ideas about organizational practices. In order to use the MIT Process Handbook for process retrieval experiments, we had to export it into an OWL-based format. We model the Process Handbook meta-model in OWL and export the processes in the Handbook as instances of the meta-model. Next, we need to find a sizable number of queries and their corresponding correct answers in the Process Handbook. Many previous studies devised artificial dataset composed of randomly generated numbers without real meaning and used subjective ratings for correct answers and similarity values between processes. To generate a semantic-preserving test data set, we 20 variants for each target process that are syntactically different but semantically equivalent using mutation operators. These variants represent the correct answers of the target process. We devise diverse similarity algorithms based on values of process attributes and structures of business processes. We use simple similarity algorithms for text retrieval such as TF-IDF and Levenshtein edit distance to devise our approaches, and utilize tree edit distance measure because semantic processes are appeared to have a graph structure. Also, we design similarity algorithms considering similarity of process structure such as part process, goal, and exception. Since we can identify relationships between semantic process and its subcomponents, this information can be utilized for calculating similarities between processes. Dice’s coefficient and Jaccard similarity measures are utilized to calculate portion of overlaps between processes in diverse ways. We perform retrieval experiments to compare the performance of the devised similarity algorithms. We measure the retrieval performance in terms of precision, recall and F measure? the harmonic mean of precision and recall. The tree edit distance shows the poorest performance in terms of all measures. TF-IDF and the method incorporating TF-IDF measure and Levenshtein edit distance show better performances than other devised methods. These two measures are focused on similarity between name and descriptions of process. In addition, we calculate rank correlation coefficient, Kendall’s tau b, between the number of process mutations and ranking of similarity values among the mutation sets. In this experiment, similarity measures based on process structure, such as Dice’s, Jaccard, and derivatives of these measures, show greater coefficient than measures based on values of process attributes. However, the Lev-TFIDF-JaccardAll measure considering process structure and attributes’ values together shows reasonably better performances in these two experiments. For retrieving semantic process, we can think that it’s better to consider diverse aspects of process similarity such as process structure and values of process attributes. We generate semantic process data and its dataset for retrieval experiment MIT Process Handbook repository. We suggest imprecise query algorithms that expand retrieval results exact matching engine such as SPARQL, and compare the retrieval performances of the similarity algorithms. For the limitations and future work, we need to perform experiments with other dataset other domain. And, since there are many similarity values diverse measures, we may find better ways to identify relevant processes by applying these values simultaneously.

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