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

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Christopher Spottiswoode" <cms@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 15 Apr 2009 05:46:50 +0200
Message-id: <31C1D0A885164F2194EDBF94865F8B2E@Dev>
Hmmpf, so I have been losing you all in a cloud of words?  And yes, it is true, 
clouds are indeed as difficult to kick as they are to grasp and embrace...    (01)

So in the light of recent posts in this thread please bear with me as I try to 
be more comprehensive and explicit (yet still surprisingly succinct, given the 
scale of the message) than I was in my post to this thread of April 12, in 
response to Amanda's evidently so stimulating reflections. (That post of mine, 
so approvingly copying Amanda's too, is now at 
http://ontolog.cim3.net/forum/ontolog-forum/2009-04/msg00119.html.  (It had 
the "haystack" metaphor where this one has used "cloud".))    (02)

The "Ride The Mainstream!" project has, amongst many others, these traits that 
to me make it most pertinently and even clearly relevant to all your posts 
following up on Amanda's:    (03)

1.  The project involves building and deploying an ontology-based software 
engineering tool-cum-user-agent, designed to support the full-cycle marketing 
any Internet-leveraging product, whether ad hoc and entirely user-driven, or 
whether UML- or MDA-like scale or professionalism are appropriate (where 
"full-cycle marketing" covers every stage from needs awareness through 
collaborative consensus-seeking, product design and development, to deployment, 
training and support, cycling back to needs awareness).    (04)

2.  That user agent (maybe even the "market boot product" Metaset 1.0) will 
speed up product development by an order of magnitude or more, yet produce 
products of higher industrial-strength.    (05)

3.  That anticipated quality will be thanks to the collaborative development 
user agent will support and enhance, but thanks primarily to its ontological 
basis and the coherence- and consistency-cultivation which is its very modus 
operandi.    (06)

4.  The above together means that that faster marketing cycle will speed up 
application migration and system evolution by even greater orders of magnitude.    (07)

5.  The ontological basis involves ontological structures and disciplines in 
describing not only state but also provided-for events and their initial system 
effects as seen in the narrow context.  Automatically inferred consequences 
further transform state (eagerly or lazily recording the results, as 
appropriate), but also, reflectively, transforming context, producing a 
transformed user interface.  This is where that fractal nature manifests itself.    (08)

6.  State includes a definition of user goal, and there will always be multiple 
such goals, often highly threaded.  A database at any one time, consisting of 
goals and their contexts, will in the above interactive mode continually calve 
"external goals" in the form of further such databases, context-delimited and 
further condensed by reference to Common Knowledge.  Those are messages to 
user agents for them to act upon and respond in kind.  That might for example 
take the form of a populated database-subset extension of interest to the first 
agent's goals, that case constituting.a response to a query.  It could also 
result in the incorporation of new application functionality, apparently 
creatively.  (That multi-database messaging process is well modelled, in a 
snapshot fashion, by the metaphor of the agates and their interconnecting 
channels of the same material!  (As in the slides now at 
http://TheMainstream.info/RTM.html.))    (09)

7.  The above sounds terribly convoluted but is greatly rationalized, 
and managed by reflective components most likely being reused on account of the 
high generality that the ontological approach promotes.  In effect such 
components are implementing patterns - and helping avoid anti-patterns - for 
simplification of complexity by appropriate abstraction, that is, working 
ontologically.    (010)

8.  That very process will induce great refinement of upper or more abstract 
components, and will rapidly result in the emergence of useful upper ontologies 
with extensive and most likely ever-growing commonality.  No great, laborious 
terribly lengthy process!    (011)

9. All the above is to take place in market mode.  Now re-read this paragraph 
from my above-linked earlier post, addressing Amanda:    (012)

>>That heuristic strategy, cultivating emergence, is even implicit in the 
>>project's name, evoking the all-inclusive process whereby greater 
>>on a niche-wise basis, expressed as applied ontologies/abstractions, is 
>>invented/discovered and further leveraged, all in market mode, where the 
>>evolutionary Supply/Demand matching captures the fascinating 
>>Top-down/Bottom-up duality you see is needed. (Note how those 4 "/"-ed duals 
>>correspond.)    (013)

10.  I am busy programming all the above (in plain C, using low-level Windows 
APIs) and could well use some help on that front.  I have been taking a long 
time, with lengthy diversions into attempted team-expansion like my efforts on 
this Forum.  That's some the upfront Supply part of that Supply/Demand 
But what I must add is that every time I have had a programming blockage it has 
always been resolved, highly architecture-canonically too, by returning to the 
philosophical perspectives that have evidently so informed the whole 
development.    (014)

11.  My posts to this Forum have recently explicitly thanked Amanda, Pat H, 
S and Pat C.  Maybe I shall still soon be quoting (with their permission) 
contributions by Chris M and Duane N.  I am sure those will not be the last. 
(My apologies to those whom I have used but omitted in those acknowledgements.) 
Special thanks to Peter Yim too, of course!    (015)

12.  Anyway, you have all greatly encouraged me in my resolve to return now to 
concentrating once again on that C coding...   And I look forward to more 
substantial assistance from at least some of you in due course, maybe even 
perhaps as I invited it in the above-cited slides from my recent Summit-related 
foray.  You may sometimes think we are very far apart, but we are in fact so 
close together already.  If only I could express the whole situation better! 
This is, after all, The Mainstream, even if not the one you first thought.    (016)

13.  How can you believe all the above?  Go back and explore that cloud, that 
haystack;  note how everything I have been saying for so long still applies 
(except the hoped-for timings...).  Ask yourself how many currents of thought 
our industry have been that straight for so long.  Then note how much movement 
in our industry has been converging with this line, not the other way around. 
You may need some interpretation by myself, it is true, and feel free to 
question any of it, but be just a little bit charitable in your interpretation 
and above all don't allow yourself to get fixated on any one meaning of your 
favourite words, as I might be using them in a different sense.    (017)

14.  For example, let me clarify of my use of "ontology" words above.  It can 
read in your usual way, but then you might tend to dismiss my use as erroneous, 
as I am really just talking "data models"?  Not so.  It is all part of the 
objective of the project as set out at the outset of 
namely:    (018)

"To finalize and launch a new information technology architecture and 
infrastructure, with a fundamentally philosophical basis so that in widely 
practical ways it will help everybody pervasively improve the way democratic 
societies function, and in general help individuals realistically set and 
their own goals."    (019)

Those individual and collective "Beings" will progressively emerge through 
refinement during those supported market processes, as in my quote of myself in 
point 9 above.  So I prefer "Ontology" to distinguish it from your "ontology".    (020)

As for your "ontologies", as you know I prefer "Form", short for "conceptual 
form", even though for the first decades of this 40+ years project I would use 
"abstract system".  I absolutely do not wish to tempt any fixation on any one 
Form or set of Forms by calling them "ontologies".  It's "emergence" of Being, 
again, as usual, and thanks again, Amanda, for having re-introduced that word 
into this Forum's deliberations!    (021)

15.  Ah, John S has just come in with this, quoting Ed B:    (022)

>EB> ... It will be primarily governed by money and politics, not technical 
>excellence, and not knowledge engineering in the field.
JS> I very strongly agree.    (023)

Clearly, I strongly disagree, as in my recent exchange with Azamat.    (024)

But John does continue with what I most strongly support:    (025)

JS>  The prime example [of big money and politics prevailing] is the Semantic 
Web. There are some examples of good ontologies, mostly developed by small 
dedicated groups.  The rest amply demonstrate the negative progress since 
Aristotle.    (026)

And I note that Ed B has just recalled Amanda's "emergence" reminder, and noted 
how it seems to have triggered general violent agreement.    (027)

All the above from me is just more clouds of words?    (028)

Ok, if so, bye for now, thanks again to everybody, and get in touch when you 
feel ready.  Else just wait for it, and that user agent AOS, maybe even still 
Metaset 1.0 if not someone else's product somewhere, perhaps prompted by some 
my many words, will make it all clear, surprisingly soon after all, in 
culmination of a very small-scale project by the standards bandied about on 
Forum.    (029)

But if not, and we might have the glimmerings of a joint project emerging, 
discuss it, here or offline.    (030)

Anyway, please excuse my impatience,
and warm regards to all!
Christopher     (031)

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