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Re: [ontolog-forum] Semantic Enterprise Architecture - Interoperability?

To: "'[ontolog-forum] '" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Matthew West" <dr.matthew.west@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 11 Sep 2010 16:12:52 +0100
Message-id: <4c8b9c74.0aefd80a.015b.5ecf@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Dear Patrick,    (01)

> Thanks! A couple of comments follow:    (02)

> > MW: To be fair I should be a little more precise. I have in model
> theoretic
> > terms been talking about the intended interpretation. A logical
> theory may
> > have any number of possible interpretations. However, in each
> > interpretation, each logical term represents just one thing.
> >
> But isn't that true for linguistic terms as well?    (03)

MW: No really. Logical terms have an intended meaning within the context of
a logical theory. You can use the logical term in another theory, and it
will have no connection to any other use of the term. In logic the whole
universe is no more than the theory in question. So the use of the term in
another theory is entirely disconnected. That is not true with words.
> That is any one speaker/user of a linguistic term intends for the
> linguistic term to represent just one thing. Yes?    (04)

MW: In the context that they use it, yes.
> The problem with linguistic terms being that we have very large and in
> some cases historical sets of them and little reliable guidance on the
> "one thing" that any particular user may have meant.    (05)

MW: I think that is overly pessimistic. Rather I would say that too often we
are careless to capture the context within which the term is used. We use
short hand rather than long hand. So I have been talking about logical terms
and linguistic terms to disambiguate, but others were getting confused
because each assumed that just "term" was being used with their meaning.
> > MW: Now the question of linguistic terms representing more than one
> logical
> > term (and vice versa) is something one can build a logical theory
> about. The
> > linguistic terms are signs that may have different interpretations in
> > different contexts, and it is perfectly possible to develop a theory
> of how
> > this happens (and example can be found in ISO 15926), but to do this
> you
> > need to distinguish between logical terms and linguistic terms, not
> confuse
> > them.
> >
> So, logical terms are ones that represent only one thing and what they
> represent is according to the author of logical statements using those
> terms.    (06)

MW: Only one thing in a particular theory.
> Curious what do we do about interpretation of logical terms of
> historical authors of logical statements?    (07)

MW: Read the definitions they wrote for those terms. That is their intended
interpretation. If they did not write definitions, you should criticise them
for failing to pay sufficient attention to model theory.
> Agreeing that logical terms, in a particular interpretation, represent
> only one thing, but how do we decide which one thing it represents?    (08)

MW: Read the definitions provided.
> Or to put it differently, when does cultural, social, historical
> distance become great enough that logical terms become linguistic terms
> because we lack the information to say what "one thing[s]" they
> represented? If ever?    (09)

MW: Culture does not impact logic. Sloppiness does impact your ability to
determine the intended interpretation.    (010)

Regards    (011)

Matthew West                            
Information  Junction
Tel: +44 560 302 3685
Mobile: +44 750 3385279
http://www.matthew-west.org.uk/    (012)

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