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Re: [ontolog-forum] Terminology Question concerning WebArchitecture and

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Steve Newcomb <srn@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: 24 Jul 2007 17:13:51 -0400
Message-id: <87ps2h5wts.fsf@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
"Azamat" <abdoul@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> writes:    (01)

>   > No, we really do not have a single common ontology. This is quite 
>   > evident when one tries to get people to agree on a formal ontology. 
>   > They seriously disagree - that is, they each find the other's point 
>   > of view insane, and will argue for hours, in some cases for years - 
>   > about questions such as:
>   > 
>   > -- is the paint on the wall of a room in the room, or part of the room?
>   > -- is saying that a cat is eating at a time t the same as saying that 
>   > the temporal part of the cat at t is eating?
>   > -- is a cat at a time t the same thing as the same cat at a different 
>time t'?
>   > 
>   > and many, many others.    (02)

>   This is a sort of sophistical technicalities, created by
>   endurantists and perdurantists, and irrelevant to a serious
>   discussion.    (03)

I think "serious" often means "in furtherance of my own agenda".    (04)

In a former life, I worked on an abstract standard for music
interchange.  I learned that, according to many participants in the
process, lots of issues were irrelevant to "serious" discussions.
Each participant's list of irrelevant and/or pointless things was
different, of course.    (05)

It's hard to take seriously a person whose concerns are obviously
irrelevant to one's own, just as it's hard to abandon the conviction
that one is the center of the universe.  Or even to pretend to abandon
it.  And yet such pretense is the beginning of wisdom (as well as of
truly serious difficulties of many kinds).    (06)

If you get to the point where you can self-convincingly pretend that
your own concerns do not outweigh all others, so that you can begin to
hear what others are trying to tell you, you may find that the most
irrelevant and pointless things are the ones being promoted by people
who regard *your* own concerns as categorically irrelevant and
pointless.  Perhaps you discover this when they invoke categories like
"endurantist" to dismiss them.    (07)

Steve    (08)

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