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Although service-oriented architectures go a long way toward providing interoperability in distributed, heterogeneous environments, managing semantic differences in such environments remains a challenge. We give an overview of the issue of semantic interoperability (integration), provide a semantic characterization of services, and discuss the role of ontologies. Then we analyze four basic models of semantic interoperability that differ in respect to their mapping between service descriptions and ontologies and in respect to where the evaluation of the integration logic is performed. We also provide some guidelines for selecting one of the possible interoperability models.
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