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Re: [ontolog-forum] Next steps in using ontologies as standards

To: Pat Hayes <phayes@xxxxxxx>, "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: paola.dimaio@xxxxxxxxx
Date: Mon, 26 Jan 2009 05:22:50 +0700
Message-id: <c09b00eb0901251422k45b647b9l581a0898370cf4@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Thanks Pat

what determines formality, and to what degree, is another long discussion

It looks as if you are confusing formal,with formalims

The definition for 'formal' per se is not under question (I hope, not now at least) - but formalism , although containing the same root form-, means something else in most definitions
such as

in wordnet
formalistic - concerned with or characterized by rigorous adherence to recognized forms (especially in religion or art); "highly formalized plays like `Waiting ...

I intend formalism as
"strict adherence to prescribed forms;", and other similar definitions

as such, human language in developed and educated adults, who adhere to grammars, syntantical and semantic forms, are formalisms

especially when we can extract conceptual and logical structures from languages that can be translated in to more formal notation,  like maybe the one you are thinking of

also please note that we have already had this conversation (and even came to some agreement) some time ago, dont have time to look for the thread, but somehow this part of the conversation  feels  redundant

I am really struggling to understand under what formal theory would causal relations come under, so that I can check out the relevance or not to FOL, (your other post today) but I am getting lost in reading other stuff. this web is a double edged sward, intelligent filters please

your thoughts and explanation of why causal relations are logical or not are welcome, although I suspect as you point out it may be worth defining the terms, since there seem to be so many interpretations


On Mon, Jan 26, 2009 at 4:58 AM, Pat Hayes <phayes@xxxxxxx> wrote:

On Jan 25, 2009, at 3:41 PM, paola.dimaio@xxxxxxxxx wrote:

Hi Pat

. Natural language is not a formalism.

Kindly provide your definition for formalism, so that we can
put your authority in the right context

I was using the term in a linguistic/philosophical context, to mean a formal language or notation, the archetypical example being FOL. Formal in this sense means that the syntax is exactly specified in a formal grammar, which for these purposes can be defined to be a context-free EBNF grammar, though other grammar notations are acceptable. English, like all other natural languages, has never been formalized in this sense and never will be, because it is in a constant state of dynamic change.




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