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Re: [ontolog-forum] Axiomatic ontology

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Randall R Schulz <rschulz@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 1 Feb 2008 17:23:42 -0800
Message-id: <200802011723.42233.rschulz@xxxxxxxxx>
On Friday 01 February 2008 17:03, John F. Sowa wrote:
> ...
> For deep reasoning, I would insist on a representation in formal
> logic.  But for commonsense reasoning, I believe that formal
> deduction is not necessary.    (01)

How does the moniker "common-sense" become an epithet for non-formal 
reasoning?    (02)

Frankly, what is it that can be captured in a digital computer that is 
anything _but_ formal? Computers execute deterministic programs. When 
the algorithms are non-deterministic, they suffer the consequences 
of "guessing" until a ... (I was going to use the "f...t..l" word!) 
successful result is obtained.    (03)

I think it's quite curious that we're talking about anything that is 
_not_ formal. Whatever that may be, it is of no consequence in the 
fabrication of digital information systems. We fundamentally cannot 
write programs that are anything other than encodings of formal 
systems!    (04)

(Whether this will change when we have quantum computers, I don't know, 
but that is, presumably, neither here nor there in this discussion.)    (05)

> Case-based reasoning using analogies 
> from very large resources, such as the WWW, is simpler and faster.
> Furthermore, it can take advantage of much, much larger resources
> than Cyc without requiring all the effort of defining large
> ontologies or writing XML tags.    (06)

No matter what, if they use algorithms, they're deterministic and 
formally expressible    (07)

Now, while it's true that a snippet of procedural code in an everyday 
language such as C or Java can have a voluminous FOL representation, 
the fact remains that Turing machines are formal things and all 
computations we can today carry out are Turing-equivalent.    (08)

If you cannot formalize it, you cannot compute it!    (09)

> John    (010)

Randall Schulz    (011)

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