Slots

Slots operate the same way as “fields” in traditional object languages and the same ways as “columns” in spreadsheets and relational databases.

If you have a JSON object that is conformant to a LinkML schema, then the keys for that object must correspond to slots in the schema, that are applicable to that class.

for example, if we have an object instantiating a Person class:

{"id": "PERSON001",
 "name": "....",
 "email": "....",
 ...

then id, email, name should all be valid slots, as in the following schema:

classes:
  Person:
    slots:
      - id
      - name
      - email

If we have tabular data

id

name

email

PERSON0001

then the same constraints hold.

ranges

Each slot must have a range - if this is not declared explicitly, then default_range is used.

The range must be one of:

Examples:

slots:
  gender:
    slot_uri: schema:gender
    range: GenderType  ## range is an enum
  has_medical_history:
    range: MedicalEvent ## range is a class
    multivalued: true
    inlined_as_list: true
  age_in_years:
    range: integer  ## range is a type
    minimum_value: 0
    maximum_value: 999

slot_usage

The slot_usage slot can be used to specify how a particular slot ought to be used in a class.

For example, imagine a schema with a generic “Relationship” class:

  Relationship:
    slots:
      - started_at_time
      - ended_at_time
      - related_to
      - type

with subtypes such as FamilialRelationship, BusinessRelationship, etc

we can use slot_usage to constrain the meaning of more generic slots such as type and related to:

  FamilialRelationship:
    is_a: Relationship
    slot_usage:
      type:
        range: FamilialRelationshipType
        required: true
      related to:
        range: Person
        required: true

Identifiers

If a slot is declared as an identifier then it serves as a unique key for members of that class. It can also be used for inlining as a dict in JSON serializations.

slots:
  id:
    identifier: true

the range of an identifier can be any type, but it is a good idea to have these be of type uriorcurie

Slot cardinality

multivalued

The multivalued indicates that the range of the slot is a list

Example:

slots:
  has_medical_history:
    range: MedicalEvent
    multivalued: true
    inlined_as_list: true

required

The required slot can be used to define whether a slot is required.

When a slot is declared as required, any class that uses that slot must have a value for that slot.

inverse

The inverse slot can be used to specify the inverse predicate of a given predicate slot relationship.

  parent_of:
    is_a: famlially_related_to
    inverse: child_of