The names of many of the OWL constructs come from corresponding names in mathematics. Despite their mathematical names, they also have a more common, everyday interpretation. The idea owl:inverseOf is a prime example; if a relationship—say, hasParent—is interesting enough to mention in a model, then it’s a good bet that another relationship—say, hasChild—is also interesting. Because of the evocative names hasParent and hasChild, you can guess the relationship between them, but of course the computer can’t. The OWL construct owl:inverseOf makes the relationship between hasParent and hasChild explicit, and describes precisely what it means.

In mathematics, the inverse of a function f (usually written as f–1) is the function that satisfies ...

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