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Re: [ontolog-forum] Difference between XML and OWL

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 06 Nov 2008 21:33:15 -0500
Message-id: <4913A8EB.9000506@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Michael and Pat,    (01)

I agree with Pat on these issues:    (02)

PH> In my experience, increasing expressivity often makes the
 > language easier to use and less complicated, by removing the
 > syntactic barriers and limitations that are needed to ensure
 > inference tractability.    (03)

Indeed.    (04)

MU> It took a few years for people to figure out how to and to get
 > around to creating enghlisy syntax for owl.  I find the restrictions
 > part of owl highly convoluted, and found it hard myself to come up
 > with readable understandable English for my own simple examples.    (05)

PH> Quite. Yet this is less expressive than simple FOL or CL, which
 > has a simpler grammar that OWL-DL and is simpler to syntax check
 > and to parse.    (06)

The convoluted syntax of OWL results from trying to force it into
RDF-style triples.  That was a decision based on ideology, not on
human factors or computational efficiency.    (07)

Please look at the mapping from medical English to controlled English
to CLIF and CGIF (start at slide 15):    (08)

    http://www.jfsowa.com/talks/cl_sowa.pdf    (09)

The mapping is straightforward, and the statement in each of the
four languages fits on a single slide.  But the person who mapped
that example to OWL originally had doubts that it was possible.    (010)

By a great tour de force, he finally mapped it to OWL, but it took
many pages of convoluted code.  No syntactic sugar or pretty
diagrams can make it intelligible.    (011)

John    (012)

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