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Re: [ontolog-forum] N-RELATIONs: Formal Ontology, Semantic Web and Smart

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Christopher Menzel <cmenzel@xxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 8 Nov 2011 22:58:47 +0100
Message-id: <1FF62611-FEB8-40A2-8FBF-2B329334A5DB@xxxxxxxx>
On Nov 8, 2011, at 10:27 PM, Ed Barkmeyer wrote:
...we need some
grammatical structure that is used to represent truly n-ary relations
and nothing else.  SQL is a bad example, because it merges n-ary
relations, compound statements and adverbial modifiers into one
grammatical structure.  CLIF is a bad example, because it doesn't have a
way to express adverbs, either.

Not so! Adverbs can be taken to express functions on the properties and relations expressed by the verbs they modify. Representing them is no problem in CLIF with its (well, with CL's) type-free syntax. So, for example, if we take "slowly" to modify action verbs like "buttered", then we can represent "John buttered the toast slowly" in CLIF as:

  ((slowly buttered) John theToast).

Adverbs are typically axiomatized in the obvious way, e.g., in the 2-place case:

  (forall (Adv Verb x y) (if ((Adv Verb) x y) (Verb x y))).


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