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Re: [ontolog-forum] Is there something I missed?

To: "'[ontolog-forum] '" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Matthew West <dr.matthew.west@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 29 Jan 2009 22:36:21 -0000
Message-id: <49822f82.2115300a.0399.61ed@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>

Dear Ali,


I think I’ll but in here on binary relations.


Off the top of my head, my location seems like a quaternary relation (location Ali, x, ,y ,z) in 3D space. Or by GPS, it'd be at least a ternary relation. Similarly, if i wanted a time stamp associated within a relation (as opposed to a conjunction with another relation), i'd want potentially higher arity relations.

 [MW] Unfortunately, I have spent a lot of time looking at how to model change, and one of the key things that falls out is that things that look like n-ary relations under a current state view need to become n binary relations under a change over time view. This doesn’t mean that you don’t end up with some n-ary relations, but far fewer than intuition would suggest. Also, teasing relations apart (as Ian did with your example above) can help to produce a more rigorous (and therefore more reusable) analysis.




Matthew West                           

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