This website introduces:

  • A solution to the problems with data exchange and data integration, through
    • A methodology for Semantic Information Modeling for data exchange and data integration.
    • The definition of a family of formalized languages, including Formal English, Formal Dutch and other formalized natural language variants. This enables expressing and interpreting information in a universal formal way.
    • Software tools that support data exchange between application systems of various parties and searching.

The objectives of Semantic Information Modeling are to enable:

  • Interoperability of systems and information integration, through
    • System independent information models.
    • A standardized formal language for expressing information, knowledge, requirements as well as queries and responses.
    • A universal data exchange format, supported by software tools.
    • Natural language independency and automated translation.
  • Applying logic reasoning on data, knowledge and requirements, for
    • Enabling intelligent searching by applying logic reasoning.
    • Supporting computer augmented design, fabrication and maintenance.
    • Enabling computer augmented verification of deliverables versus requirements.

Registered users have access to

  • A wiki guide on the expression of information in one of the formalized natural languages and the exchange and interpretation of messages in such a formal language. This includes data as well as queries and responses. The guide applies the Gellish Semantic Modeling Methodology.
  • A base version of Gellish Formal English and various documents with application examples.
  • The Gellish Communicator software (via Github.com). This is a reference application, providing example source code, usage examples, data verification, searching and a generic user interface.

The webshop offers:

  • Taxonomic Dictionary-Ontology

    The taxonomic dictionary-ontology of Formal English and Formal Dutch can be purchased and downloaded, together with a search engine application and a user guide. The software can be installed on Windows PC’s to search for terms and relation types and to navigate through the network of related concepts.

    The data consists of the concepts, vocabulary, definitions and relations that define Formal English or Formal Dutch (Formeel Nederlands). The data can be imported in database systems providing them with a basis for creating and interpreting messages in the formal languages.

  • The book ‘Semantic Information Modeling Methodology’ describes a systematic approach for creating information models, knowledge models, requirements models and definition models, while using formal languages. The book is illustrated with many practical examples.
  • The book ‘Semantic Information Modeling Language’ explains how the formal languages of the Gellish family are defined and how they can be extended in such a way that the languages enable universal information exchange and interoperability of systems.Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu. Also available as eBook: Support independent publishing: Buy this e-book on Lulu.
  • The book ‘Formalized Natural Languages’, Definition and Application of Universal Information Modeling Languages’ (2014). This is the 2nd edition of ‘Gellish, a Generic Extensible Ontological Language’ (2005); PhD, Delft University of Technology.Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.
  • The book ‘Taxonomic Dictionary of Relations’ is a printed version of the definitions of kinds of relations and their denoting phrases and inverse phrases that form the core of the definition of the Gellish family of formalized languages. The relation types are also suitable to be used as standard kinds of relations (properties) in RDF/OWL based data exchange (also available in Dutch).
  • Licenses for the Gellish Semantic Modeling Methodology and for the Formal English language definition, giving:
    • The latest versions of the basic Ontology and Taxonomic Dictionaries
    • The protected part of the knowledge base and Wiki
    • Free of charge access to the purchasable documents
    • 10% reduction on the purchasable software
    • Help desk support for a maximum of 10 ’10 minute’ requests per year
    • Processing of 10 requests for Taxonomic Dictionary extensions or enhancements per year


  • Information Management and Maturity Assessment Guide

Benefits of formal languages

A break-through for interoperability

Formal languages, such as Formal English and Formal Dutch (Formeel Nederlands) are a form of standardized computer interpretable subset of natural languages. Their definition includes a formal syntax (expression format) and an electronic Taxonomic Dictionary-Ontology. They enable expressing information, knowledge and requirements in a human and computer interpretable way that is ‘neutral’ and system independent. A formal language has an unlimited scope, in contrast to most conventional data models (databases) that have a fixed and limited scope. Gellish formalized languages are standardized formal subsets of natural languages. Their native syntax enable presentations in a tabular form, suitable for databases and data exchange messages. Other formats are also possible, such as RDF/XML. Gellish is compliant with ISO 16354 and an RDF implementation of Gellish is being standardized as ISO 15926-11.

Application of a formal language, such as Formal English, enables real interoperability or integration of data from different sources. It also enables integration of data, documents, and 2D drawings and 3D models. The language is generally applicable and is extensible. Its main application area’s are: the creation of compatible and consistent databases such as for system independent Product and Process Models, Facility Information Models (FIMs), Building Information Models (BIMs), product catalogs as well as knowledge and requirements, including business rules. Furthermore, it enables smooth data exchange between systems and business parties and eliminating costly data conversions in case of data migration and data integration. It is also applicable for development and application of electronic Dictionaries, Taxonomies, Thesauri and Ontologies.

The definition of Gellish Formal English, including the taxonomic dictionary-ontology is available for licensees or can be purchased via the webshop. Gellish can be used and implemented in various ways, including in conventional SQL database systems, or in XML, or in RDF, OWL or in simple CSV files or as spreadsheet tables. Gellish Formal English is an ’embedded language’, which means that it does not need a meta-language for its definition.

Read more about the exploitation of the power of:

  • Formal English
  • The Gellish Semantic Modeling Methodology

Formal Language variants

Formal English and Formal Dutch (Gellish Formeel Nederlands) are examples of formalized languages variants from the Gellish family of formalized languages. Each concept in any of the formal languages in the family is represented by a unique identifer (a Gellish UID) which is an arbitrary language independent number or (public or private) code preceded by a prefix. Translations of terms and phrases in various languages share the same UIDs. Thus different Gellish variants share the same concepts and kinds of relations, because their UIDs are identical although their terminology is different. This enables automated translation of Gellish expressions and models between natural languages for which formal dictionaries are available.
For example, Gellish formal domain dictionaries are available for Waste Water Terminology in English, French, German and Dutch conform the terms in ISO 16323.

Free available downloads:

  • The Gellish Syntax and Contextual Facts – Definition of Universal Semantic Databases and Data Exchange Messages (the Gellish Expression Format) which includes the definition of the Gellish Contextual Facts. See also an accompanying XML Schema.
  • An example of a Semantic Information Model of a road network, available in Gellish Formal English as well as in Formal Dutch (Formeel Nederlands).
  • An example of information about electric cables, including also catalogue data from various suppliers.