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Re: [ontolog-forum] semantics of the mKR language

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Christopher Menzel <cmenzel@xxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 1 Apr 2009 09:23:34 -0500
Message-id: <921D2F4C-98E3-4355-B24D-0D53D2BC1FBD@xxxxxxxx>
On Apr 1, 2009, at 7:47 AM, Azamat wrote:
> John wrote"
> AA> Mao said: "Letting a hundred flowers blossom and a hundred schools
>>> of thought contend is the policy for promoting progress in the arts
>>> and the sciences ...".
>> That's a good slogan. But there's a big difference between  
>> actionsand slogans. Remember that about 40 years ago, Mao let loose  
>> theRed Guards, who tried to destroy the "flowers" (books, art  
>> work,and scholars) of several millennia of Chinese arts and sciences.
> That's right, John.
> For the sake of historical truth, Mao is still numbered among the  
> most important figures of the modern world history.    (01)

Likewise Hitler and Stalin.  What's your point?    (02)

> As for RHM, he has an honest open mind with sincere intentions to  
> move things. Nowadays, it is not easy to find somebody seeking not  
> monetary profit but just the pride of accomplishment.    (03)

If what you mean by "monetary profit" is simply steady funding, then  
of course it is not easy.  We are doing research that we are  
passionate about and without some source of funding to pay the bills  
it is not possible.  Do you think there is something wrong with this,  
or are the only "true researchers" in your mind either poverty- 
stricken, independently wealthy, or doing their research on the side?    (04)

However, unless I'm reading you wrong, your implication here seems to  
be that, for the vast majority of ontology researchers, their research  
is a mere means to a financial end.  Strong stuff!  If that is the  
claim, I doubt you have a shred of evidence for it.    (05)

> His generall terminology is not a big problem, when giving a proper  
> interpretation.    (06)

And the problem of giving a semantic interpretation to his work is  
exactly what several of us were encouraging him to address.    (07)

> Also, his research is not any load to the public, unlike those  
> eating the public funds without knowing what they are to deliver.  
> Here is a 'rationale' i met on the research page of one such project  
> costing Euro 14 m:
> "Most of the existing practices for the development of ontologies  
> focus on a single ontology, on a global consistency of such an  
> ontology, and, in principle, on a linear development. This is very  
> restrictive -- it is as if we all communicated in a single language  
> and completely disregarded our cultural or historical specifics.  
> Single ontology means single viewpoint on the problems, situations  
> and solutions. If in our everyday life we use many different  
> viewpoints, why can't designers of semantic applications and  
> engineers developing knowledge models do the same? In NeOn, we see  
> several dimensions, in which the existing single-ontology style of  
> work needs to be enriched."
> Which objective the whole project is aimed for: arguing for the  
> single ontology or agaist it? That's a real puzzle, not Chinese  
> puzzle.    (08)

The puzzle is why you don't grasp the fact that the writer is  
obviously arguing against the idea of a single ontology.    (09)

> I wish to be mistaken, but it sounds as the folks don't know that  
> they don't know what they are talking about and doing. I am afraid  
> that many of these people are among (ontology) reviewers, passing  
> judgments on other projects. That's a real harm.    (010)

Another real harm is to slander a legitimate research project (about  
which you apparently know very little) in a public forum with a single  
piece of cherry-picked "evidence" to "demonstrate" your thesis.  That  
is a tactic for rightwing talk radio, not a research forum.  The  
project in question, NeOn, is a large one involving dozens of people,  
many of them fine researchers.  If you want a truly fair and balanced  
account, read the annual reports and the publications the project has  
made available.    (011)

Chris Menzel    (012)

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