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    A contribution to the Semantics of Xcerpt, a Web Query and Transformation Language

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    Xcerpt is a declarative and pattern-based query and transformation language for the Web with deductive capabilities. In contrast to Web query languages like XQuery and XSLT, Xcerpt relies on concepts and techniques from logic programming and automated theorem proving such as declarative ?query patterns? and ?rule chaining?. Xcerpt can also be used for querying Web metadata, like OWL or RDF data, and reasoning on such metadata. In contrast to specific languages for OWL and RDF, however, Xcerpt is a general purpose query, transformation, and reasoning language, i.e. it can be used for reasoning not only with Web metadata but also with plain Web data. Salient aspects of Xcerpt are its nonstandard ?query patterns? for retrieving incompletely specified data and its unusual ?grouping constructs? some and all that significantly depart from the standard approaches in logic programming or automated theorem proving. Xcerpt relies on a new, assymmetric unification, called simulation unification for evaluating query patterns that incompletely specify data. Furthermore, Xcerpt does not rely on meta reasoning for expressing and processing ?grouping? constructs corresponding to Prolog?s metalevel predicates setof and bagof. This article gives a brief overview over challenges of applying logic programming techniques to Web querying. In particular it suggests two different approaches for treating the meta-level grouping constructs all and some in a proof calculus formalising the operational semantics of Xcerpt.

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    Description

    Title : A contribution to the Semantics of Xcerpt, a Web Query and Transformation Language
    Author(s) : François Bry, Sebastian Schaffert, Andreas Schröder
    Abstract : Xcerpt is a declarative and pattern-based query and transformation language for the Web with deductive capabilities. In contrast to Web query languages like XQuery and XSLT, Xcerpt relies on concepts and techniques from logic programming and automated theorem proving such as declarative ?query patterns? and ?rule chaining?. Xcerpt can also be used for querying Web metadata, like OWL or RDF data, and reasoning on such metadata. In contrast to specific languages for OWL and RDF, however, Xcerpt is a general purpose query, transformation, and reasoning language, i.e. it can be used for reasoning not only with Web metadata but also with plain Web data. Salient aspects of Xcerpt are its nonstandard ?query patterns? for retrieving incompletely specified data and its unusual ?grouping constructs? some and all that significantly depart from the standard approaches in logic programming or automated theorem proving. Xcerpt relies on a new, assymmetric unification, called simulation unification for evaluating query patterns that incompletely specify data. Furthermore, Xcerpt does not rely on meta reasoning for expressing and processing ?grouping? constructs corresponding to Prolog?s metalevel predicates setof and bagof. This article gives a brief overview over challenges of applying logic programming techniques to Web querying. In particular it suggests two different approaches for treating the meta-level grouping constructs all and some in a proof calculus formalising the operational semantics of Xcerpt.
    Keywords : rewerse query evaluation xcerpt semantics

    Subject : unspecified
    Area : Other
    Language : English
    Year : 2004

    Affiliations Institute for Informatics, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich
    Conference_title : Proc Workshop on Constraint Logic Programming
    Url : http://rewerse.net/publications.html#REWERSE-RP-2004-18

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