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[ontolog-forum] Meaningful labels [was: Fixed labels in software?]

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: David Eddy <deddy@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 15 Feb 2010 16:23:57 -0500
Message-id: <00348E29-CB29-4329-948C-0F942CF275E4@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Rob -    (01)

On Feb 14, 2010, at 2:09 AM, Rob Freeman wrote:    (02)

> If it is my plea that we stop disputing names for things, I think that
> applies even more to computer software.
> There is even less need to use fixed labels in computer software.
> Certainly not at the application level.
>    (03)

Please to explain this.    (04)

It has been my experience that there are names/labels EVERYWHERE in  
computers & software... variable names, column names on reports,  
folders, files, subroutines, methods, programs, schemas, ad  
infinitum.  When names/labels are done poorly (which is most of the  
time), then it makes understanding more difficult.    (05)

I would ask... if one does not have fixed labels at the application  
level (I'm meaning: in the programs and all the artifacts around the  
programs that are the application), how is a human going to make  
sense of what the software is doing?    (06)

Are you saying that names/labels are not relevant to ontology efforts  
& get in the way of ontology discussions?    (07)

Or is there some means to avoid opaque, difficult-to-understand,  
ambiguous labels in software?    (08)

I am fully aware, as John Sowa points out, that computers actually  
use symbol tables, but such base+displacement "labeling" is seriously  
human unfriendly.    (09)

David Eddy
deddy@xxxxxxxxxxxxx    (010)

781-455-0949    (011)

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