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[ontolog-forum] problem understanding subClass used

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Paul Hermans <paul@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 15 Dec 2010 17:11:43 +0100
Message-id: <9EC80163-1A18-41DE-9DD3-958C8657AD1D@xxxxxxxxx>
I'm just a novice in this area and I'm trying to learn from existing ontologies.

The ontology I'm studying now is about Cultural Heritage.

In this ontology there is a class "Event" with definition
"This class comprises changes of states in cultural, social or physical systems, regardless of scale, 
brought about by a series or group of coherent physical, cultural, technological or legal phenomena."
"the Yalta Conference", "the birth of Cleopatra", "my car accident of last friday", "the big bang"

A second class is "Period" with definition
"This class comprises sets of coherent phenomena or cultural manifestations bounded in time and space.
It is the social or physical coherence of these phenomena that identify a Period."
"European Bronze Age", "Italian Renaissance".

Now what puzzles me is that Event is defined as a subClass of Period.
So "the Yalta Conference", "the birth of Cleopatra", "my car accident of last friday", "the big bang" all become instances of Period.

The rationale for doing this according to the ontology:
"The distinction between an Event and a Period is partly a question of the scale of observation. 
Viewed at a coarse level of detail, an Event is an "instantaneous" change of state. 
At a fine level, the Event can be analyzed into its component phenomena within a space and time frame, and as such can be seen as a Period."

I still find it difficult to consider something that instantaneous changes state is automatically and at the same time something stable and coherent.

Any pointers or explanations that can further enlighten me?

Kind Regards,

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