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Re: [ontolog-forum] what is a proposition?

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Ingvar Johansson <ingvar.johansson@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 25 May 2007 14:53:58 +0200
Message-id: <4656DC66.70608@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
KCliffer@xxxxxxx schrieb:
> Ingvar,
> I think I am in agreement with you on most of your points, insofar as 
> I understand them, except for the one about why bring in epistemology.
> My concern was that in an effort to make an ontology for some type of 
> indexing of knowledge (applied ontology, as opposed to philosophical 
> ontology??), we should be aware of a vast universe of propositions and 
> knowledge for which this will be difficult or impossible, given the 
> difficulty even ascertaining what the propositions are.    (01)

O.K., I have taken it for granted that everyone is aware of this; at 
least I am. But I would like to add one thing: in engineering it is hard 
to tell what is *completely* impossible to do before many clever men and 
women have tried to do the impossible.    (02)

> One question was about the degree to which this concern is relevant to 
> the endeavor. If it's relevant at all, another question might be about 
> how to maintain perspective on the endeavor - build it somehow into 
> the structure and use of an ontology - in light of the concern. For 
> example, the frontier of definition and agreement on propositions 
> shifts, perhaps even on previously asserted propositions - how can 
> this be handled, if it should?    (03)

Since we are fallibilists in matters of both epistemology and 
communication, I think we should draw the conclusion that *very little* 
can be done on a *general philosophical level* of epistemology and 
semantics, but that *very much* can be done in each and every *concrete 
case* where we need more knowledge and/or want to reduce 
misunderstandings in communication.    (04)

Ingvar    (05)

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