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Re: [ontolog-forum] A different approach to ontology

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 08 May 2008 23:11:43 -0400
Message-id: <4823C0EF.4010002@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Andreas,    (01)

I certainly agree with that point:    (02)

 > Working quite often for the military, the dream of an
 > unambiguous language to be spoken by men and machine is
 > everything but new. Actually, the military is pretty good
 > at using exact terms for expected behavior (also known
 > as orders)....    (03)

That goal can be achieved with a wide range of special purpose
languages, all of which are formally defined, but some of which
may use a subset of the syntax and vocabulary of natural languages.
Those versions are usually called *controlled natural languages*.
See, for example,    (04)

    Controlled Natural Languages - Homepage    (05)

Adrian Walker has a different approach that also uses NL words.
He doesn't call his version a controlled NL, but it is also
limited to a specific subject domain, and the result is just
as formal as any version of logic.    (06)

In my previous note, I was criticizing a naive view that it
might be possible to have a single very simple, very precise
language that covered more than one specialty at the same time.
The controlled NLs are versions of logic, which can be used for
multiple applications, but only by switching to a different
vocabulary (ontology) for each domain.    (07)

John Sowa    (08)

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