Finite Model Reasoning in Description Logics

Diego Calvanese

For the basic Description Logics reasoning with respect to finite models amounts to reasoning with respect to arbitrary ones, but finiteness of the domain needs to be considered if expressivity is increased and the finite model property fails. Procedures for reasoning with respect to arbitrary models in very expressive Description Logics have been developed, but these are not directly applicable in the finite case. We first show that we can nevertheless capture a restricted form of finiteness and represent finite modeling structures such as lists and trees, while still reasoning with respect to arbitrary models. The main result of this paper is a procedure to reason with respect to finite models in an expressive Description Logic equipped with inverse roles, cardinality constraints, and in which arbitrary inclusions between concepts can be specified without any restriction. This provides the necessary expressivity to go beyond most semantic and object-oriented Database models, and capture several useful extensions.

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