[Top] [All Lists]

Re: [ontolog-forum] Foundation ontology, CYC, and Mapping

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Len Yabloko" <lenya@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 15 Feb 2010 19:13:13 +0000
Message-id: <W5732327355177451266261193@webmail49>
Dear John and All,     (01)

I am joining this discussion late, but would like to take advantage of clarity 
that it has reached thank to formulation below     (02)

John Sowa wrote:
>We have two options:
>  1. Admit that encoding background knowledge in computer systems
>     is a futile exercise and continue with the programming
>     practices that have evolved over the past half century.
>  2. Develop formal ontologies that enable computer systems to
>     reason with and about the "intended meaning" of the data
>     they receive from humans.
>    (03)

Are 1 and 2 mutually exclusive? I think the programming practices have being 
evolving in the direction of encoding background knowledge, be it on a less 
formal basis than ontology. But at the same time ontologies have being evolving 
to do that on less formal basic than mathematics. Does option 1 implies that 
various digrees of precision can not co-exist? I think option 2 simply augments 
option 1 and I don't see anyone making the choice any time soon. In that case 
the question should be not about choice, but about possible connections which 
may be made using some properly defined "primitives".    (04)

>Option #2 requires ontology encoded in some logic-based notation(s).
>(By logic-based notations, I include SQL, UML diagrams, and STEP
>as well as Common Logic, OWL, etc.)  The rules expressed in those
>notations will have to make the intended meanings explicit with
>the same level of precision as any engineering discipline -- i.e.,
>the precision and techniques used in writing mathematical formulas.
>John    (05)

I believe the precision used by engineers is often much less than that used in 
corresponding mathematical calculations. For example when calculating dynamics 
of mechniucal structures like bridges the engineering methods are intentionally 
in-precise in allowing for unanticipated loads and dynamics. What engineers do 
is more like setting up "primitives" that embody both mathematical models 
(which themselfs are approximations) and empirical data collected from past 
engineering practices (and less often from computer simulations). The 
mathematics and engineering continue co-exist quite hormoneously and no one 
suggested to make the choice between the two.   
And computers are enormously useful in mechanical engineering without full (or 
any at all) understanding of human intentions.     (06)

My question to everybody on this forum: what makes software engineering so 
different from mechanical engineering or chemical engineering or any other 
engineering? Unless what we are talking a bout here is not an engineering at 
all but entirely new discipline, more like medicine or architecture.     (07)

Len Yabloko,
Next Generation Software
www.ontospace.net    (08)

Message Archives: http://ontolog.cim3.net/forum/ontolog-forum/  
Config Subscr: http://ontolog.cim3.net/mailman/listinfo/ontolog-forum/  
Unsubscribe: mailto:ontolog-forum-leave@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Shared Files: http://ontolog.cim3.net/file/
Community Wiki: http://ontolog.cim3.net/wiki/ 
To join: http://ontolog.cim3.net/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?WikiHomePage#nid1J
To Post: mailto:ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx    (09)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>