Socio-technical networks (STNs) are networks of people and social things (i.e. autonomous physical or virtual objects). An STN mirrors the physical world by creating digital counterparts of physical and abstract entities and relating them to one another. In the same time, applications running in the digital world may reflect back into the physical world (e.g. through actuators). An STN encodes the different relations among people and smart things, such as friendship, ownership, provenance or colocation. An STN may exist only within the minds of its members, however, in most cases, an STN is reified within an STN platform. STN-Core provides the core concepts and properties required for describing STNs. Developers may use STN-Core to describe existing STNs, but also to guide the design of new STNs. Other modules of the STN ontology are available at the following locations: STN-Operations: https://w3id.org/core/operations STN-Operations-HTTP: https://w3id.org/core/operations/http
An agent is an autonomous entity (most commonly a person, organization, physical object or virtual object) that interacts with other agents in the physical-digital space.
unstable A closed message is a message with a fixed set of receivers. However, depending on the features offered by the hosting STN platform, a closed set of receivers may be modified by one of the agents already involved in the communication. Such is the case of a message thread on Facebook, where either the sender or one of the receivers may add new users to the message thread, or they may remove themselves from the message thread to stop receiving new replies.
Digital artifacts are virtual tools used by agents to participate in STNs. A digital artifact may be a digital counterpart of an abstract or physical entity, such as a digital counterpart of a physical place, or it may exist independently, such as an online message. Digital artifacts exist in the digital world and are hosted on STN platforms. An entity may have several digital counterparts, and a digital counterpart may have several digital representations. A user account is a kind of digital artifact.
A group is a collection of agents. A group is an abstract entity that may be associated with one or more digital artifacts, i.e. its digital counterparts. For instance, the AI-MAS research team of University “Politehnica” of Bucharest may be associated with a Facebook group and a LinkedIn group.
unstable A message is a piece of information transmitted by an agent, usually through the use of a user account, to a set of receivers. A message may be sent in reply to another message. A message is currently classified following 2 dichotomies: open vs. closed messages and shared vs. transmitted messages.
unstable An open message is a message that has an open set of receivers, i.e. the set of receivers may evolve over time without the direct intervention of an agent. For instance, a message made available to anyone on the Web has an open set of receivers. Similarly, on many social platforms users may post a message that is made available, by default, to all (or a subset of) the users they are connected to. However, their connections may evolve over time, and new connected users may have access to older messages.
Persons are human agents, they represent people. A person is also a spatial thing.
Places are all spatial things that are not persons (e.g. geographical regions, cities).
A platform is a system that provides a collection of features enabling agents to participate in an STN. Common features include creating and using user accounts, publishing social media content or interacting with other platform users.
A role is a function that may be enacted by an agent, within the scope of a group, platform, etc.
unstable A shared message is made available to a (possibly open) set of receivers, yet the sender of the message may decide at any time to stop sharing the message with some (or possibly all) of its receivers. For instance, a direct message sent on Twitter is actually a shared message, and the sender may decide to delete it at any time.
A smart place is a smart thing which is also a place. Most commonly, physical things (e.g. table, room, backyard) fall into this category.
A social thing is an agent that most commonly embeds the logics of a given physical or virtual object, although it may also represent a composite application (e.g. one built on top of several other smart things).
A spatial thing is an entity with spatial characteristics (e.g. position, surface).
unstable When a message is transmitted, an actual copy of the message is received and owned by the receiver. Such is the case of a private message sent on Facebook.
A user account is the digital counterpart of an agent within the scope of a platform. An agent may hold multiple user accounts, usually on different platforms. A user account may be anonymous.
An entity (e.g. agent, user account or group) to which this entity (e.g. agent, user account or group) is connected to in an STN.
An agent that is member of this group.
An agent, user account or group that is a receiver of this message.
A message that is a reply to this message.
An agent or a user account that is the sender of this message. A message has only one sender.
The agent that holds this user account.
A user account held by this agent.
An entity (e.g., a user acount, some social media content) that is hosted on this platform.
The platform that hosts this entity (e.g., a user account, message).
A message received by this agent, user account or group.
A message to which this message is a reply.
A message sent by this agent or user account.
A spatial thing wrt which this entity is located.
An entity located wrt this spatial thing.
A group this agent is member of.
An owner (e.g., an agent, a group) of this smart thing.
A smart thing being owned by this entity (e.g., an agent, a group).
A digital artifact that represents this abstract or physical entity.
An abstract or physical entity (e.g. group or person) represented by this digital artifact.