This paper proposes the construction of a Conceptual Model as a logical step prior to the preparation of the Object Model of an ontology to facilitate the design and development of software systems in which a high-level internal representation of context supports some intelligent capabilities. The intent of the Conceptual Model is to be expressive for human interpretation utilizing descriptions that are readily understood by laypersons, subject matter experts, and software developers who may be concerned with only a particular portion of the software system. The intent of the Object Model (as a subset of an ontology) is to be expressive for machine interpretation. The author argues that the existence of a Conceptual Model not only serves as an effective communication vehicle among the various stakeholders in a software development project, but also facilitates the development of the Object Model component of an ontology.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/jpohl/95/