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Re: [ontolog-forum] ISO merged ontology effort "MCO"

To: "'[ontolog-forum] '" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Patrick Cassidy" <pat@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 10 Apr 2009 09:34:52 -0400
Message-id: <03ec01c9b9e1$20e134e0$62a39ea0$@com>
   Re: your comment:
[JS] > 
> Guidelines for any proposed standard ontology:
>   1. It should be consistent with accepted principles and practices
>      in every branch of science, engineering, business, and the arts.
> . . . .    (01)

   One additional criterion I would suggest for a 'standard' ontology
(upper. Lower, middle, whatever):
  ***It should have a variety of open-source publicly available applications
that demonstrate that it actually achieves its intended purpose *before* it
is formalized into a standard.***    (02)

  After all these years of talking about standard ontologies, I have arrived
at the feeling that an ontology is more complex and of a different character
than most standards that have been formalized. The detailed means of
applying ontologies to practical applications appear to me to be a lot less
easy to envision than for most standards.  For that reason I think that no
ontology should be a formal 'standard' until it has had a lot of public
vetting in more than a few applications of the kind it is intended to
support.    (03)

   But this doesn't mean that a community of interest should not focus on
some **common** ontology which they use to power their applications.  Quite
the contrary, I think it is important for each community of interest to
agree on only one ontology of each kind to be developed, and tested in
applications, and evolved, by that community.  There can of course be more
than one community each focusing on its own common ontology.  At this stage
of development of ontology technology, it seems likely to me that ontologies
will evolve rapidly with use and only stabilize enough to formalize into a
standard after a lot of testing in practical applications.    (04)

   One such community might be those who want to achieve broad semantic
interoperability among diverse database systems; another might be those
concerned with Natural Language Understanding.  Those are the two
communities I have in mind who might benefit greatly from collaboration
together on adoption of a common Foundation Ontology; build the first
version collaboratively, then test it exhaustively.  The interaction of both
communities in this way could be quite synergistic.    (05)

Pat    (06)

Patrick Cassidy
cell: 908-565-4053
cassidy@xxxxxxxxx    (07)

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