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Re: [ontolog-forum] Probabilistic Ontologies

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Kathryn Blackmond Laskey <klaskey@xxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2007 15:35:29 -0400
Message-id: <p06110466c294a2f14cce@[]>
At 11:50 AM -0600 6/12/07, Conklin, Don wrote:
>For Kathy: please let me know when you come upon that well-designed
>probabilistic ontology, I'd really like to see it.
>Don Conklin
>Lockheed Martin
>Information Systems & Global Services
>7021 Harbour View Blvd, Suite 105
>Suffolk, VA 23435
>757-935-9581 Office
>757-935-9563 Fax    (01)

I don't think I'm going to come upon one by serendipity any time 
soon.  But I'm aiming to make one happen!    (02)

I (as well as many others) have been working on the necessary 
foundations for a number of years, and the theory and languages are 
now well enough advanced that it's possible to build bona fide 
probabilistic ontologies.  (The state of usability of the tools is 
another matter!)  My colleagues, students and I have built several 
toy probabilistic  ontologies.  I've worked with colleagues to build 
artifacts that were called "probability models" but had features that 
one associates with ontologies, i.e, were built in expressive 
probabilistic languages with have types and individuals, subtypes and 
inheritance, attributes and relations.  I wouldn't call any of these 
"well-engineered probabilistic ontologies" for the reason that they 
were built for clients to solve specific problems, and had to make 
compromises because there were no good upper ontologies for some of 
the things the system had to do, and there was no time to build them, 
so hacks were devised that worked for the purpose of the specific 
problem but would give a principled ontologist a queasy feeling.    (03)

I expect this situation to dramatically change over the next decade. 
Stay tuned!    (04)

Kathy    (05)

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