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Re: [ontolog-forum] predicates in RDF

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Chris Menzel <cmenzel@xxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 1 Jan 2008 23:43:28 -0600 (CST)
Message-id: <alpine.OSX.1.00.0801012318400.16525@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
On Wed, 2 Jan 2008, paola.dimaio@xxxxxxxxx wrote:
> Thanks John and Pat
> I admit, I had a broad range of reactions to that statement
>> # the predicate is the word "creator"
> (shrieeekkk, what?, surpise, dispair, bewilderment, incredulity)    (01)

But why?  "creator" in that example from the RDF documentation is simply
short for "is the creator of", which corresponds almost exactly to the
definition of "predicate" that you yourself provided.    (02)

> Maybe thats because the semantic web is being designed by
> mathematicians and computer scientists, who have little appreciation
> for natural language?    (03)

You are aware that a huge number of linguists are also computer
scientists, right?  And that modern theories of syntax, for example,
involve a great deal of very sophisticated mathematics?    (04)

> ...RDF is a framework to provide a structure to natural language    (05)

Well, I'm not entirely sure what you mean by "providing a structure for
natural language", but I don't believe there is any reasonable sense in
which RDF has anything at all to do with providing any sort of structure
for natural language.  RDF is a FORMAL language for representing
information on the World Wide Web.  As such it has a very precise formal
syntax and a mathematical model theory for giving precise definitions of
truth, validity, and entailment for the language.  Its only connection
to natural language is that it can be used represent certain pieces of
information that might be expressed in natural language in a rigorous,
computer-processable form.    (06)

-chris    (07)

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