Rich and John, (01)
Precisely so. This is why I raised the need for a precise
definition of "Engineer". Every field has an understanding of
what one is, and a set of standards, professional bodies and so
on, which help to propagate that. Except computer science, where
people call themselves "Engineers" without reference to the sort
of formality that would be required of an Electrical Engineer, a
Chemical Engineer or a Civil Engineer. (02)
The problem is less acute in non English speaking countries, and
in English speaking countries outside of the UK and the Americas.
In most countries, using the term "Engineer" is considered to be
as precise as using the term "Doctor", but somehow in British
usage it has become reduced to a generic term along the lines of
"workman". This hasn't helped anyone in software "engineering" to
find themselves part of the culture and practice of engineering,
And yes, as a first taxonomic step John's definition is right.
But there is more, I believe. For example I am not an engineer
for reasons too complex to go into here, but it's not simply
something you call yourself, and it's not a term which is defined
by observing what you do day to day. There are more formal
properties set out by the engineering institutions. (04)
On 27/12/2010 21:26, Rich Cooper wrote:
> Engineering is the use of economically appropriate technologies to solve
> realistic, real world problems. Ontologists haven't shown an interest in
> economics, or in specific problem solving so far. The disconnect between
> what is going on in this list, and in other ontology groups, versus the
> engineering discipline and outlook, is still quite vast.
> The entire issue of practical application has been ignored so far. It
> probably might just as well be, since ontology has not progressed far enough
> yet to provide useful applications, other than simple things like the Dublin
> Core ontology. It is probably too early, and too philosophically
> interesting to too many academics, to even begin that transition to practice
> Maybe the future will change that prospect, but it still has a very, very
> long way to go. The emphasis on reducing capability of expression, on
> limiting solutions so they can be academically analyzed, is still in
> process. That orientation to meet scholarly goals of academia has to be
> completed, and the limits of ontological practice found and documented,
> before deeply demonstrative practical applications can be exhibited
> Rich Cooper
> Rich AT EnglishLogicKernel DOT com
> 9 4 9 \ 5 2 5 - 5 7 1 2
> -----Original Message-----
> From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> [mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Mike Bennett
> Sent: Monday, December 27, 2010 1:16 PM
> To: [ontolog-forum]
> Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Fwd: [New post] The Newest from SOA: The SOA
> Ontology Technical Standard
> Perhaps we need an ontologically precise definition of what it
> means to be an "Engineer", as a starting point.
> On 27/12/2010 15:14, Christopher Menzel wrote:
>> On Dec 26, 2010, at 9:44 PM, doug foxvog wrote:
>>> On Thu, December 23, 2010 14:36, Christopher Menzel said:
>>>> Until ontological engineers, like engineers of every other other stripe,
> can be assumed to have a well-defined baseline of knowledge and a basic
> technical skills, an endless repetition of elementary modeling errors ...
>>> Before a professional engineer of any other stripe is allowed to promote
> herself as an engineer s/he has to be certified as qualified to do so.
> Without a similar rigorous certification process, anyone could hang out a
> shingle as an "ontological engineer".
>> Indeed, seems to me that is already happening.
>>> Perhaps some body should design such a certification process and provide
> certificates to those who manage to pass.
>> That is exactly what I had in mind, Doug.
>>>> We trust every new bridge that is built to hold us up (in part) because
> of the knowledge and skill of the engineers who designed it; sound bridges
> that perform their function reliably are the norm, not the exception.
>>> Nowadays. It was different in the 19th Century, before certification was
> required. Bridges fell down. Dams collapsed. Ontologies proved F -- oh
> wait, that's today.
>> :-) Of course, present-day failures in the US are due largely to its
> near-complete neglect of aging infrastructure in favor of its current
> grotesquely misplaced spending priorities.
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