Page Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 January 2016 11:02 EDT, 2012, 2016

Complex Operational and Organizational Problems

PROJECT: Model Metadata Ontology

Dr. Dean S. Hartley III

Project Metadata Keywords
Label Name Other Year DurationYrs
Client Hartley Consulting none Commercial
Dates 2013 1
Employer Hartley Consulting
Partner N/A
Classification issues
Computer hardware issues
Configuration management
Consequence Management
Data Verification & Validation
Database design
Documentation standards
Geopolitical analysis
Global War on Terrorism (GWOT)
Human factors
Human, Social, Cultural Behavior (HSCB) Modeling
Impact analysis
Independent Verification & Validation (IV&V)
Information storage and retrieval
Irregular Warfare (IW)
Knowledge Management (KM)
Model/System integration
Modeling, Simulation & Gaming (MSG)
Operations Other Than War (OOTW)
Software issues
Software reuse
Stability Operations (SASO, SSTR)
Verification, Validation & Accreditation (VV&A)
Warfare modeling


Identify the characteristics of models of Irregular Warfare (IW) [and similar domains] that are useful to potential users who are searching for the right model to use.  This is currently an Independent Research & Development (IR&D) project.


Since at least the 1970s, the US government has developed catalogs of models.  Each catalog included metadata that the compilers thought would be valuable in distinguishing the models and in determining which models might be functional for some future user.  A fair number of these catalogs have been examined and the results were combined into categories with entries representing actual models in the Department of Defense inventory.  These entries are known to be not comprehensive.  For example, Wikipedia has a list of computer programming languages that is much larger than the entries in that category; however, some of these languages may be obsolete or not useful for the types of models useful for IW.  In general, this webpage will be "under construction" for some time as additional entries are suggested and incorporated.

Upper Level Ontology:

The metadata ontology is a taxonomy at its highest levels.  Eight categories are needed:  names & dates, computer science, methods, players, dimensional representation, coverage, usage, and connections.  These categories are subdivided as shown in the figure below.

The subcategories are defined as follows:


Lower Level Ontology:

Each subcategory has a set of descriptive classes.  For all but four of the subcategories, any given model is linked to a single class choice for each subcategory.  For the four remaining subcategories, the model may be linked to a single class choice or to multiple class choices.  These choices will be augmented, as needed.

Names & Dates

Computer Science

Dimensional Representation








This ontology represents a part of the description of any particular IW model and of the set of IW models in general.  It does not contain the detailed description required to fully understand any model, as such a description contains too many variable components.  However, it does contain enough information to describe a model's general nature.  Given a set of models, each fully described by this ontology in a computerized system (whether as a database or a Web Ontology Language (OWL) system), the ontology allows for a selection of models with characteristics that might be appropriate for a given user.

The Model Metadata Ontology has also been used to improve the DIME/PMESII VV&A Tool.  The organizational structure provided by the ontology improves the user's ability to find the proper elements to ascribe to the system, model and modules and to display the results in a meaningful manner.

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