On Feb 4, 2010, at 7:02 PM, Pavithra wrote:
> Thank you for your response, and I got the point about axiom!
> (Just side note: I do not agree with classification schema! People are human
>and animals are animals and birds are birds. I think it is confusing to call
>all of them animals. (01)
Humans are a undeniably a species of animal no less than apes, lions, and
birds. I think what you are objecting to (quite correctly) is Ed's use of the
word "person" as a synonym for "human". To call something a person is to imply
that it has rights and obligations (such as those that come with citizenship).
Hence, personhood is more properly thought of, not as a biological notion, but
as an ethical and social notion (as your reference to citizenship suggests). I
suspect that Ed was (rather uncharacteristically) just being a bit careless in
his choice of words. (02)
Chris Menzel (03)
> If Biologist re - visit the classification schema again, and make it close to
>reality it would help logicians. One does not have to be born in a country
>to be citizen. Citizenship is country specific. In USA one can become a
>naturalized citizen by taking up US citizenship. In Dubai one can not do
>that. But Tigers and elephants are definitely Indian citizens. They are the
>pride and joy of India like in Africa.)
> Have a good evening!
> --- On Thu, 2/4/10, Ed Barkmeyer <edbark@xxxxxxxx> wrote:
> From: Ed Barkmeyer <edbark@xxxxxxxx>
> Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Foundation ontology, CYC, and Mapping
> To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> Date: Thursday, February 4, 2010, 7:39 PM
> Pavithra wrote:
> > Dr. Sowa,
> > - An Elephant is an animal
> > - Clyde is an elephant
> > - Therefore Clyde is an animal
> Fine. Now let us use our very limited vocabulary in the following way:
> A citizen of a country is a person born in that country.
> A person is an animal.
> An elephant is an animal.
> Clyde is an elephant.
> Clyde was born in India.
> Is Clyde a citizen of India?
> Maybe. We can't deny the proposition.
> The problem is that we also need a vocabulary that provides the terms to
> distinguish "person" from "elephant", and the definition of "person" has
> to include those "distinguishing characteristics". A person is an
> animal with some specific properties that distinguish "person" from
> "elephant" and, more problematically, from "ape" (or not). Experience
> teaches that it takes an enormous vocabulary to explicitly make all the
> distinctions people's brains have learned to make. It is in making all
> the necessary distinctions that the 2000-word vocabulary breaks down.
> The alternative of course is that you only need an axiom: No person is
> an elephant. But then you need a lot of axioms just to sort out
> persons, elephants, tigers and mongoose. And the volume doubles when
> you move to Australia.
> 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
> "The opinions expressed above do not reflect consensus of NIST,
> and have not been reviewed by any Government authority." (04)
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