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Re: [ontolog-forum] [Fwd: [CL] RIF Basic Logic Dialect hits last call]

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 30 Aug 2008 23:42:48 -0400
Message-id: <48BA1338.4070604@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Ron,    (01)

 > If I understand the Wikipedia article correctly...    (02)

The Wikipedia article has very little detail.  I pointed to it
because it has pointers to other references for the details.    (03)

 > I have no faith that a single definition of concepts will be built.    (04)

Neither do I, mainly because, as Wittgenstein observed, there are as
many different definitions of any word as there are "language games"
that use that word.    (05)

 > I am not sure that any central organization will have the manpower
 > to review the hundreds of ontologies(foundation or topic specific)
 > that will be produced over the next few years.    (06)

The primary purpose of a registry is to *register* ontologies, not
review them.  The people who use them write reviews that are recorded
in the registry.  The ones that get better reviews get more attention
and are more widely used.  The ones that get bad reviews drop out
of sight and are ignored.    (07)

 > I just want to have a ghost of a chance of being able build up
 > a compatible set of ontologies (basic science, units of measure,
 > physics, chemistry, process equipment, instrumentation, health
 > and safety, regulatory, etc.) from many sources.  I want to use
 > them without having to rename everything.    (08)

That should be possible.  If a suitable registry system is established,
various industry groups will do the reviewing, etc.  The registry is
a prerequisite that enables the development, but the main function of
the registry is just to register ontologies, provide a unique name for
each one, and make them available for anybody who wants them.    (09)

 > I understand that terms like "bond" will overlap between chemistry
 > and regulatory ontologies and that I will have to include the
 > namespace when selecting the one that I want.    (010)

If ontology X17 uses the term 'bond', you can refer to it as 'bond.X17'
to distinguish it from 'bond.X4327'.    (011)

 > This is analogous to the java package. I can pick libraries from
 > various sources and incorporate them into my programs with some small
 > risk of collision.    (012)

The analogy with software libraries is very apt.  You can think of
an ontology as a component that is used in the development and use
of some application system or service.    (013)

 > It is time to get the namespaces organized.    (014)

The namespaces will look a lot like the URIs that you see on the
web.  The organization evolves as structures of pointers that relate
the ontologies.  Web sites that nobody finds interesting have few
or no pointers to them.  Others are more tightly interconnected.    (015)

John    (016)

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