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Re: [ontolog-forum] The Relation Between Logic and Ontology inMetaphysic

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Bill Andersen <andersen@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 17 Mar 2007 00:09:58 -0400
Message-id: <9B7A726E-4B95-4017-8EB3-E16842685175@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

On Mar 16, 2007, at 23:32 , paola.dimaio@xxxxxxxxx wrote:

I consider myself highly compentent, and I assure you that your degree
in mathematical logic would not help you to do my job, nor many other
jobs associated with ontology engineering from a 'business' viewpoint.

I may not be able to contribute intelligently to this thread because
it is beyond my competence, but believe me, I would not hire any of
you guys to work on a project cause it will never get anywhere


This just isn't fair and it's more than a bit mean-spirited.  I am one of "those guys" who think that knowledge of logic, while not sufficient, is necessary for anyone who fancies themselves to do "ontology".  I also have lots of software development experience (15 years, if that's enough for you) in "business" environments and enough working on applying ontology to business problems to know what you say is just about as false as can be. 

To make systems work, we have to make conceptual compromises all the time
(something that none of you here seems interested in - which is your
prerogative btw)

That is also false.  What you mean by "compromises" are one of the main reasons that "ontology-based" information systems *fail* - compromise is hardly a self-contained desideratum.  What you call "compromise" becomes manageable only when the compromiser is aware of and can elucidate what is being compromised.  Else, we call it "confusion".

 I build controlled vocabularies, work with developers to have them
impemented,  make sure that ontology layer is  not overlooked at
project mangement level, and I dont' see your (albeing interesting)
discussion  can help me, and people like me

All of the people I've seen fail at applying *ontology* (and no, I'm not talking about controlled vocabularies, DEDs, thesauri, topic maps or any such) in "business" environments have one thing in common - they don't understand logic.  Some also fail because they don't understand ontology.  Now, some of "us guys" differ on what and how much "ontology" in the philosophical sense ought to be packed into the computational sense, but make no mistake - there is more agreement than disagreement on the fundamentals.

Language and grammar are more relevant to ontology than mathematical logic
 the good news is you dont have to agree with what I say, cause you
decide where your reality begins and where it ends (and so do I)

Perhaps, but I would not want one of your "ontologies" to be responsible for controlling a nuclear power plant.  


Bill Andersen (andersen@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx)

Chief Scientist

Ontology Works, Inc. (www.ontologyworks.com)

3600 O'Donnell Street, Suite 600

Baltimore, MD 21224

Office: 410-675-1201

Cell: 443-858-6444

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