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Re: [ontolog-forum] Two ontologies that are inconsistent but both needed

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Kathryn Blackmond Laskey <klaskey@xxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2007 07:41:53 -0400
Message-id: <p0611043dc2943548d170@[]>
>  >>[WK] Many of those biomedical terminologies that you have 
>severely criticized
>>>  -- e.g., MeSH, ICD, etc. -- work as very useful, flexible (what did you
>>>  mean by that, by the way) framework for cataloguing e.g., the data which
>>>  biologists are collecting about the entities of their interest.  This
>>>  somehow did not seem to you as serving the purpose of helping research.
>>>  While they are certainly not ontologies in the sense you advocate, I
>>>  have been told many times by down-to-earth biologists that what they
>>>  need are not philosophically correct (whatever this would mean, whatever
>>>  doctrine one adopts) ontologies, but ontologies that are good enough to
>>>  make their work easier.  I have heard complaints that overly
>>>  philosophical ontologies are too distant from practical purposes, and
>>>  make the work harder.
>>[BS] For starters: I am working on X. Y and Z are
>>  subtypes of X, V and W are parts of. I need all
>>  the information about X, and so I need
>>  information about Y and Z and V and W, too. MeSH,
>>  ICD etc. will not necessarily give me this, at my
>>  command. A good ontology would.
>[WK] For more advanced:  I am working on X.  People who are working on Y are
>usually also working on X, but they tend not to use the term 'X'.  I
>want to retrieve literature on X.  Chances are that articles tagged with
>Y are relevant.  X does not have to be 'isa', 'partof', or the like, of
>Y.  MeSH, ICD etc. provide such help.    (01)

[KL] A well-designed probabilistic ontology could mediate the 
interaction, and could learn from experience to improve its estimates 
of the probability in a given context that a document tagged with Y 
is relevant to someone working on X.    (02)

Actually, to be honest, though I've stated this as a claim, it is 
more of a hypothesis.  That's because there do not yet exist any 
well-designed probabilistic ontologies that I know of. That's because 
only in the past decade or so have probabilistic languages started to 
become expressive enough to represent bona fide ontologies.    (03)

KBL    (04)

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