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Re: [ontolog-forum] Current Semantic Web Layer pizza (was ckae)

To: "Barker, Sean (UK)" <Sean.Barker@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Cc: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 30 Aug 2007 16:04:37 -0400
Message-id: <46D722D5.1040704@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Sean,    (01)

In the field of artificial intelligence, it was taken for granted
for many, many years that knowledge representation must always be
done for some purpose (i.e., the pragmatics).  Unfortunately,
many people who are working on ontology have lost sight of the
purpose -- or worse, some even think it is "unscientific" to
talk about purpose, since that is a "subjective" term.    (02)

 > I would explicitly reject the idea that a single term taken
 > in isolation has any semantics other than those exhibited
 > through the pragmatics.    (03)

I certainly agree that *none* of that syntax and semantics has
any practical value of any kind unless and until it is used
to support the pragmatics.    (04)

 > I should also note that in discussions with other people in
 > the European aerospace industry, the idea that information
 > interchange should be based on pragmatics is uncontroversial.    (05)

The confusing term here is 'based on' -- to a building contractor,
that means the things they must construct first, such as the
foundation of a house, before they can build the roof, the kitchen,
or the bedrooms.    (06)

But the architect of the house, who understands both the purpose
and the building methods, must look at the way people will actually
use the house and design every step from the foundation to the
living space in a way that makes it *livable* .    (07)

Summary:  When talking to people on this list, it's important
to make it clear whether you're talking as an architect who is
concerned with the overall purpose or as a contractor who has been
hired to build the foundation.    (08)

John    (09)

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