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Re: [ontolog-forum] Avoiding Hobson's Choice In Choosing An ntology

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Jack Park <jackpark@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 29 Apr 2006 22:48:47 -0700
Message-id: <44544FBF.9040504@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Bill, Chris, Matthew, and Barry,    (01)

I regret that I was not able to respond earlier to this thread; I can 
only lay claim to the fact that I installed a new and vigorous virus 
detector on my computer and it quite literally ate my email inbox. (As a 
child, I never got to invoke "my dog ate my homework", so this is 
particularly delicious opportunity for me now, but it's still the truth 
;) I am just now able to see the direction the thread is taking and I 
would like to offer a lone comment, that of the fellow (moi) that 
started talking about federation of ontologies through subject-centric 
mapping. The more I look into the literature, the less sure I am that I 
have conjured a novel approach.    (02)

In my mind, there has never been a thought that subject maps were 
brought forth to transcend perceived limitations of any other 
representational mechanism. Rather, I believe that I am claiming that 
subject-centric mapping should be explored/evolved as a means to 
supplement that which already exists. Perhaps it is the case that, just 
as there can be no single upper ontology that, alone, satisfies all use 
cases, there is no single merging/federating mechanism that, alone, 
satisfies all use cases as well.    (03)

I remain persuaded that the opportunity to render what we are calling 
"worm holes" visible to those who choose to select an inclusive view of 
a federated universe of discourse is a valid and valuable reason for my 
inquiry. At the same time, I would like to remind those who choose to 
follow this inquiry that a federated universe of discourse should not 
preclude individuals from viewing and using those ontologies with which 
they are solely or most familiar. If a subject map is implemented 
properly, one should have the opportunity to apply what Douglas 
Engelbart has, for years, called "viewspecs" to select the manner in 
which information resources are presented/viewed. Subject maps provide 
"scoping" facilities which can serve as filters, as for example, "show 
me only members of the X ontology."    (04)

Well, I said a "lone comment." Maybe I changed my mind. I'd like to add 
that the implementation of a subject map engine that I am creating uses 
a rule-based merging agent, one capable of invoking inference engines 
in, for instance, Jena, and also within the growing map. I see no reason 
to believe that existing and evolving logic systems be ignored in my 
implementation. Indeed, in an invited address to the Topic Maps Research 
and Applications workshop in Leipzig last year, I sketched an 
architecture which blends conceptual graphs into the relationship 
architecture of a subject map engine.    (05)

In any case, I am most pleased that there is genuine and thoughtful 
interest in this (or any) persuit of useful federation systems.    (06)

Thank you.
Jack    (07)

Bill Andersen wrote:    (08)

> Chris pretty well covered all the main points, but I couldn't resist...
> On Apr 29, 2006, at 20:10 , Chris Menzel wrote:
>> On Sat, Apr 29, 2006 at 11:19:55AM -0400, Patrick Durusau wrote:
>>> ...Finally, it is FOL that imposes limitations on mapping.
>>> Assume that we have an experienced analyst that is reviewing
>>> information that has been recorded in a subject map using subject
>>> proxies. Due to their experience, they have reached a conclusion that
>>> what appears to be two distinct individuals is actually one. A
>>> conclusion that would result in merging proxies that represent the
>>> purchaser of weaponized anthrax and a recent entry into the US.
>>> They may not have an articulable basis for that conclusion and so FOL
>>> is not going to be of any use.
>> I'm not at all sure what an "articulable basis for a conclusion"  is, but
>> why does one need such a basis any more in the case of an identity
>> assertion than in any other case?  If the analyst comes to believe  that
>> S1 is in Afghanistan, she writes: In(Afghanistan,S1).  If she comes to
>> believe that individuals S1 and S2 are one and the same, she writes:
>> S1 = S2.
> I believe it is more the case that Patrick is confused between:
> 1) Syntax (he's talking about proxies) versus semantics (what the  
> proxies are taken to denote)
> 2) Belief (in one analyst's judgement, A=B)
> 3) Logic (there is no reason that the sentence 'A=B' could not be  made 
> the subject of reference, such that whatever basis a believer  may have 
> for believing what it expresses could be articulated formally)
> It has been difficult for me to understand many of Patrick's (and  
> related correspondents') comments that imply that TM and other  similar 
> proposals somehow transcend the "limitations" of logic for  the purposes 
> of doing "ontology".  I'm quite certain Patrick and I  mean something 
> very different by the term.
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