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Re: [ontolog-forum] Foundation Ontology Primitives

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: David Eddy <deddy@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 6 Feb 2010 13:32:26 -0500
Message-id: <B513A924-AA5A-4F7D-9C04-3E95D7D50800@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Ferenc -

On Feb 5, 2010, at 11:07 PM, FERENC KOVACS wrote:

Please to understand, my interest here is strictly in the context of software & information systems.  We, as a global society, are on a path where we are only going to become more & more dependent on information systems... & so far they are not a well managed resource.

I used to be a computer system analyst a long time ago,

I think that helps.

So you understand to some degree the several stages of the SDLC (systems development life cycle)


My contention/human observation is that information (what the system is to do) passes through each stage, the language used to describe said system will mutate for a variety of reasons.  Eventually you end up in the maintenance phase which can likely last several decades and consume the vast majority (80%?) of the spending on the system.

There is typically minimal to no contact between the people who write the initial code and those who do the maintenance.

The various forms of human readable documentation generated in the requirements-analysis-design stages disappear & become obsolete.  Eventually the code IS the documentation.  Code is typically only marginally human readable.

The individuals doing the coding & maintenance typically have minimal knowledge of the actual business purpose of the code.

I am still trying to speak about primitives and unique identifiers in the midst of plurality of objects 

I do not understand "primitives" or "plurality of objects."

I also doubt that I understand "unique identifiers" in the context you mean it.

For me, a unique identifier is a mechanism in a database used to uniquely identify something of interest to the organization or database.

I'm of the opinion that being forced to used database unique identifiers causes huge problems with people working on naming/identifying issues.  Example: when I think of "water" in my brain I also find "kinda like" stuff like H2O, ice, snow, rain, hail, cloud, fog, ...  

Too many times to count I have seen otherwise intelligent people pursue having a single, unique name for a "thing" across the enterprise.

David Eddy


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