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

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Cc: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: "doug foxvog" <doug@xxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 16 Feb 2010 23:32:11 -0000 (GMT)
Message-id: <3195.>
Sean Barker wrote:
> Doug Foxvog wrote    (01)

>> "The referent for many terms would have to be defined in NL.  And the
>> boundary conditions for terms would be hard to define.  Can we formally
>> define a cat?  Certainly one could formally define a chair, but each
>> ontology to be mapped to would probably have a different definition.  It
>> might be nice to describe fuzzy boundaries for concepts."    (02)

> One might define cat through what cats are in themselves, a particular
> group
> of living creatures, defined by the genetic boundaries that prevent
> breeding
> with other creatures.    (03)

This definition relies on an unknown genetic defintiion.  It can not be
used to determine whether a given living being is a cat.    (04)

> However there is nothing of itself that makes a chair a chair (think of
> the 60's fad for pod shaped chairs hanging from the ceiling).
> Basically, chair is an artefact designed and manufactured for a single
> adult
> human to sit on, clear of the floor. This definition eliminates
>   - Rocks
>   - Logs
>   - Tables (which can be sat on)
>   - Benches, pews, settles, sofas
>   - Cushions
> However, the definition would need a few tweeks to eliminate car seats,
> ejector seats, lavatories, bosun's chairs, etc.    (05)

... stools, bicycle seats, ...  Wouldn't a back support be needed.
Why exclude children's chairs?  My main point here is that various
existing ontologies would have different descriptive derinitions.
Most would have defined their local terms on the basis of object features.
This definition is based on the intent of the designer & manufacturer
instead of intrinsic properties of the object.    (06)

> A chair is not defined by its form, but by the processes that humans apply
> to create and use it (the forms of life in which it is involved). This is
> what I mean when I say that "semantics is defined by behaviour". We have
> common semantics (we have made the same differentations) up to the point
> where we have common forms of life.    (07)

> If when I ask the robot grocer to give
> me "three red apples" it gives me three red apples, then I can be happy it
> understood the request - in saying that the semantics of "three red
> apples"
> is understood, all I am saying is that it behaved in the correct way. I
> have
> no need of the concept of "concept" to describe its understanding.
> That is, semantics is about the behaviour of systems - if you want to talk
> about the meaning of signs, I think (please correct me) we are talking
> semiotics. I suspect that much of the argumentation of recent threads
> (primitives, Longman's dictionary, etc) is a proxy arguement between
> semantics and semiotics.
> Sean Barker, Bristol    (08)

doug foxvog    doug@xxxxxxxxxx   http://ProgressiveAustin.org    (09)

"I speak as an American to the leaders of my own nation. The great
initiative in this war is ours. The initiative to stop it must be ours."
    - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
=============================================================    (010)

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