An article in Information Week briefly describes an initiative from the
White House on innovation. See:http://www.informationweek.com/news/government/policy/showArticle.jhtml?arti
The article reads in part:
White House Seeks Public Input On Innovation Goals
The White House this week issued a request for public input on potential
game-changing technologies the administration might pursue with research and
development dollars. The quest to identify innovation goals for the next
century is modeled at least in part on President Kennedy's commitment to
send man to the moon in the 1960s.
More specifically, the White House appears to be looking to set up a
of "grand challenges" for inventors and scientists to solve over coming
years, which the country could use as "an organizing principle for America's
science, technology and innovation policy" in order to address key national
priorities, spur economic growth, and catalyze interest in the sciences.
This might be an appropriate opportunity to put together a joint submission
for those who agree that some direct effort should be made to find an
agreement on a foundation ontology to support semantic interoperability.
Since they are thinking in terms of a “grand challenge” a project costing
in the tens of millions of dollars might be one of the smallest suggested.
My suggestion would be to aim for as rapid a solution as possible to the
semantic interoperability problem,. As part of the project I would suggest
a natural-language component that
can ease the use of the foundation
ontology and also, as a demo, converse naturally with a six-year old. I
believe that John Sowa thinks that the latter is a reasonable “grand
challenge” problem in itself； I think that an NL interface to an ontology
is closely linked to the conversation problem, at least if the NL capability
is supported by an ontology.
Anyone else willing to work on a proposal related to the FO? Are there
alternative “challenge” projects involving ontologies that others would
This opportunity to get a sympathetic hearing for a novel project may not
repeat in our lifetimes. The deadline is short, but it does not appear
essential to present a formal proposal at this stage. If anyone knows of
more information about this, let us know.
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