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Re: [ontolog-forum] Can Syntax become Semantic ?

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Ed Barkmeyer <edbark@xxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 15 Jan 2010 18:13:31 -0500
Message-id: <4B50F69B.7020905@xxxxxxxx>
Jim Rhyne wrote:
> A trading system application acts as a third party broker between the buyer 
>and seller. Both buyer and seller register with the trading system and the 
>trading system matches goods offered with buyer requests for goods. The match 
>could involve an auction (as eBay does) or a direct trade or purchase.
> The semantic web eliminates the trading system. Assume that a seller creates 
>some information on the web that is annotated with RDF. The buyer uses a 
>search service (perhaps implemented with SPARQL) to search the web. This 
>search service is general in nature (like Google) and is provided by many 
>sites on the web, or it may be a personal implementation provided by the buyer 
>or seller. The RDF provides a standard way for sellers to describe their 
>offerings without interfering with the sellers ability to create a personal 
>and pleasing web experience. It also standardizes the way buyers can frame a 
>       (01)

I would only point out that this utopian result is only possible when 
the would-be buyer and the would-be seller mark up their requirements 
resp. offerings with the same ontology, or with two ontologies that 
reference a common ontology in such a way as to enable the match up.  
The further possible solution is that some third party has created an 
ontology that links the terms in the two ontologies with appropriate 
sameAs and subsumption relationships, AND the buyer's tooling is somehow 
smart enough to find that linking ontology.     (02)

There have been many papers on the technologies for resolving the 
multiple reference ontologies problem.  I particularly remember an 
overview paper by Uschold and Gruninger, (which I can't find, my 
personal knowledge organization system being hopelessly impaired :-( ).    (03)

Murray Burke once said he expected the problem of multiple reference 
ontologies for the same subject matter to be rare.  The thinking was 
that ontologies are difficult to build and knowledge engineers are lazy, 
so they will reuse something they can find rather than roll their own.  
I don't disagree with that rationale, but I do think there are other 
motivations for wilful ignorance and deliberate parallel development.  
(In other engineering trades, for example, they have patents.)    (04)

-Ed    (05)

Edward J. Barkmeyer                        Email: edbark@xxxxxxxx
National Institute of Standards & Technology
Manufacturing Systems Integration Division
100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8263                Tel: +1 301-975-3528
Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8263                FAX: +1 301-975-4694    (06)

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