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Re: [ontolog-forum] Terminology and Knowledge Engineering

To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 24 Jan 2012 17:41:21 -0500
Message-id: <4F1F3391.80708@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Michael,    (01)

I'm happy that we agree on that point:    (02)

> I agree with John that 'the overwhelming number of OWL "ontologies" published
> on the WWW just take the informal info from a terminology, put angle brackets
> around it, and call it an ontology'    (03)

I also agree that there is an advantage in specifying the context
so that we know that Mo in a chemical terminology means 'molybdenum'
but Mo for a USPS terminology is an abbreviation of 'Missouri'.    (04)

> but I do not agree with him that you do
> not get extra value out of this. The extra value lies in introducing the
> informal term into a formalism where the context of every term is clear which
> is not true of natural languages where one word can have several completely
> different meanings depending on context.    (05)

That is exactly what terminologists do.  See the quotation below
from the ISO 12620 standard.    (06)

We have no disagreement about the goals.  Good terminologists draw
careful distinctions, define their terms precisely in clear English
(or other NLs), and specify the field in which the definitions apply.
They also post their terminologies on the WWW with URLs to indicate
where they can be found.    (07)

But it's essential to note that when you use OWL with definitions
stated in the comment field, you are not developing an ontology.
You are developing a terminology.    (08)

______________________________________________________________________    (09)

Source: http://www.erudit.org/revue/meta/2000/v45/n4/002101ar.pdf    (010)

ISO 12620 is designed to promote consistency in the storage and
interchange of terminological data through the use of a standard set
of data categories for term entries. For those who are unfamiliar with
the standard, the introduction to ISO 12620 states:    (011)

“Terminological data are collected, managed, and stored in a wide
variety of environments.  For purposes of storage and retrieval,
these data are organized into terminological entries, each of which
traditionally treats information associated with a single concept.
Data items appearing in individual terminological entries are
themselves identified according to data category. Differences in
approach and individual system objectives inevitably lead to variations
in data category definition and in the assignment of data category
names. The use of uniform data category names and definitions, at least
at the interchange level, contributes to system coherence and enhances
the reusability of data.”    (012)

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