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

To: doug@xxxxxxxxxx, "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 07 Mar 2010 11:30:07 -0500
Message-id: <4B93D48F.2010908@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Doug,    (01)

I very strongly, in fact, enthusiastically agree with that:    (02)

DF> My point was that in many ontologies, the non-leaf nodes are fuzzy.
 > They are merely there to support the leaf nodes, which have crisper
 > meanings.    (03)

That is the crux of the arguments about primitives and their value
for supporting precise interoperability.  The upper levels are
important as guidelines, but I've been arguing that they should be
very sparsely axiomatized.  Any detailed axioms in the upper levels
are almost certainly going to create inconsistencies with the
wide range of different applications at the lower levels.    (04)

In fact, I believe that the successful applications of RDFS are
mainly the result of its lack of detail and low expressive power.
RDFS doesn't create many conflicts because it doesn't say much.    (05)

But when you get to the lower levels where you specify the details
of applications, you need the full expressive power of FOL.    (06)

DF> I was considering the FO as modular, above.  I was pushing that
 > earlier, and had understood that that was the consensus of the
 > discussion.    (07)

I and many other people agree.  But there are still questions about
how big Pat C's collection of primitives would be and how detailed
their specification would be.  I have no quarrel with a collection
of primitives as guidelines.    (08)

My recommendation is to organize the hierarchy of modules and let
the issues about primitives be resolved by practice and experience
in the way people use and develop ontologies.    (09)

John    (010)

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