Modelling Umwelten

  • Jens OrtmannEmail author
  • Henry Michels
Part of the Lecture Notes in Geoinformation and Cartography book series (LNGC, volume 1)


In this paper, we present a theory to structure spaces of human activities and to connect these spaces with geographic information. We introduce a notion of environment originating in the work of von Uexküll termed Umwelt. The Umwelt links agents and the observations they make with the activities they perform using the objects in their environment that afford these activities. We then provide a mereology of environments determined by activities. We use a scenario of travelling to work to illustrate at hand of a practical application how we can integrate sensor observations in our theory to support decision-making in every-day activities. As a test case, we deal with the event of icy roads derived from current weather conditions. Our theory is implemented as ontology in the Web Service Modelling Language (WSML). To demonstrate our ontology in practice, we simulate sensor observations and their impact on the ontology in an Agent Based Simulation.


Domain Concept City Model Formal Ontology Open Geospatial Consortium Sensor Observation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for GeoinformaticsUniversity of MuensterMuensterGermany

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