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Re: [ontolog-forum] Whatis"understanding"

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Len Yabloko" <lenya@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 03 Apr 2008 22:28:19 +0000
Message-id: <W590576231269121207261699@webmail35>
John,     (01)

>I strongly disagree with the following point:
>LY> Can you at least (and at last) agree that learning from text
> > or any other form of NL is not a most promising approach to
> > knowledge acquisition.
>I don't believe that the Semantic Web and related efforts can
>succeed without much more automated or at least semi-automated
>knowledge acquisition.    (02)

By all means! I was not suggesting that automation is not possible. My point 
was that automation of knowledge acquisition from NL is not the *most* 
promising approach. And I also gave a reason for that: it is top-down.      (03)

>JS> ...human-computer collaboration is far, far
>superior -- in both quality *and* quantity -- to humans
>doing the analysis and knowledge representation without
>computer assistance.    (04)

Again, I was not suggesting to do it "without computer assistance" (I am 
software engineer, by the way:). I was simply trying to point out that perhaps 
bottom-up approaches are *more* promising because they scale better and do not 
require huge up-front investment. I gave one example of such approach 
www.freebase.com    (05)

What I mean by bottom-up is: driven by end user of knowledge. Bottom-up 
knowledge acquisition can rely on all means automation, including NL 
understanding. But, unlike user-assisted extraction of knowledge from text, it 
gives user much bigger role of defining a goal of process.    (06)

In your example of legacy system re-engineering - the process may begin by 
extraction of concepts and relations from text, but the most important input 
into new knowledge creation is re-engineering itself, as well as maintenance of 
software.    (07)

What I consider *most* promising is automated software development that would 
rely on ontological engineering at its very core. Example of that is reverse 
engineering of relational database into low level domain ontology and using it 
to create new applications (see www.ontospace.net). This is also an example of 
"modular ontology", which you advocated on this forum. In my view ontology must 
define abstract interface for software components.     (08)

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