The FIBO vocabulary is distributed using the Simple Knowledge Organization System (SKOS). SKOS is a W3C Recommendation that supports the use of knowledge organization systems (KOS) such as thesauri, classification schemes, subject heading lists, and taxonomies within the framework of the Semantic Web.
The FIBO vocabulary is distributed as a machine-readable file in which the FIBO class hierarchy is rendered as a tree structure of broader and narrower terms. Properties in FIBO appear as properties in the FIBO vocabulary. Logical restrictions relating pairs of FIBO classes are rendered as simple relationships between corresponding concepts in FIBO Vocabulary. The FIBO Vocabulary, therefore, does not reflect the full richness of the FIBO Ontologies and is provided to support knowledge organization applications that do not require the full logic of FIBO.
The FIBO Vocabulary machine-readable files are intended to provide input to a range of tools, usually characterized as Glossary or Vocabulary tools. These tools are generally used to provide further business-facing presentations of the content of these files.
FIBO OWL is available in a number of RDF formats. These are available for offline use (i.e., download all of FIBO as a zip), or online use. Each FIBO ontology file is available for “follow your nose” treatment, a general description of which is available here.
FIBO OWL is published in two releases:
- FIBO Production is published at the end of each calendar quarter and has been vetted by SMEs and passed standard industry hygiene tests for OWL.
- FIBO Development is published in real-time as changes are incorporated by the FIBO Community and consists of a draft as well-vetted content.