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

To: <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "sean barker" <sean.barker@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 2 Mar 2010 19:45:59 -0000
Message-id: <04157EA38D284031B8D7A3281BA38426@SMB>

 John Sowa wrote    (01)

 "If you consider Euclid's first four postulates by themselves, you get a
 primitive, underspecified version of geometry, which is neutral with
 respect to issues about parallel lines.  One might reasonably claim that
 this simple geometry is sufficient to capture the basic meaning of the
 word 'point" and its relationships to other words, such as 'line'."    (02)

 This exactly illustrates the nub of the argument. What ever you intend
 to mean by "point" and "line", it does not necessarily mean what you
 think it means, at least in formal mathematical theories. In my course on 
geometry, virtually every theorem
 started with the assumption "If two is not equal to zero", which is quite a 
different concept of geometry to Euclid's.
 I later worked on a geometry for computation where points were ill defined 
splodges, since if you
  formaly specify computational geometry over the real numbers, the code 
does not always work as specified.    (03)

 A.P. Herbert, in his "Misleading cases" had great fun interpreting legal
 terms, so that a cow had to be accepted by a bank as a cheque (check for
 the US) and a snail was a "wild and savage beast" - in the same category
 as a lion.    (04)

 Yes there are intended meanings, but actually tying them down is very
 tricky. If you are going to let a computer reason about terms, then
 those intended meanings must be precisely constrained. If you are not
 going to let it reason, then use a data exchange standard. If you are
 going to let it do only a little bit of reasoning, so it doesn't go off
 at a tangent, then that might work, if only you can define "a little bit
 of reasoning".    (05)

 Sean Barker
  Bristol,    (06)

> -----Original Message-----
> From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> [mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of John F.
> Sowa
> Sent: 02 March 2010 13:59
> To: [ontolog-forum]
> Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Foundation ontology, CYC, and Mapping
>                    *** WARNING ***
>  This message has originated outside your organisation,
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> Dear Matthew, Chris, Pat, Pat, and Gary,
> ...    (07)

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