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Re: [ontolog-forum] Constructs, primitives, terms

To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 16 Mar 2012 12:29:03 -0500
Message-id: <4F63785F.8070401@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Kingsley and Doug,    (01)

>> ... and the whole lot can be mapped to URIs.    (02)

> This is trivially true.  Each program module which defines terms could
> be given a unique namespace (NS) and then each term (T) defined in that
> namespace could be assigned the URI: NS#V .    (03)

Yes.  That can be done with every logic and ontology since Aristotle.    (04)

> Today, we hear a lot about BigData or 'Big Data' and very little about
> the fundamental realities associated with:
> 1. exponential growth of data volume
> 2. exponential growth of data velocity
> 3. exponential growth of data variety (heterogeneity)
> 4. exponential growth of data location disparity.
> You can't deal with these matters without URIs in your arsenal.    (05)

As I said many times, URIs are useful.  But I also emphasize that the
actual *words* that people use in any NL text are usually more *precise*
and more *informative* than any URIs that some annotator (human or
computer) has assigned to them.    (06)

Even for annotators who are professional linguists and lexicographers
95% agreement is considered exceptionally good.  Typical data entry
clerks are so clueless that their annotations are worthless.    (07)

The methods for processing NL texts are improving rapidly.  Even
today, the best NLP systems can do as well or better in selecting
word senses than the average human annotator.    (08)

Please note:  I do *not* claim that current NLP systems are good
at selecting word senses.  I am just observing that typical human
annotators are horrible.    (09)

If anybody thinks that there is a contradiction between my faith in
human authors and my skepticism about human annotators, I'd like to
emphasize a fundamental principle that linguists have observed:    (010)

    People who have never studied linguistics or logic can use their
    native language correctly when they don't think about it.  But
    when somebody asks them a question about grammar or meaning,
    their answers are hopelessly confused.    (011)

Conclusion:  Don't depend on human annotators to select URIs.
And if you are processing NL texts, it's better to have your
system select word senses than to depend on any annotations
in the texts.  At least you can control your own system, but
you have no idea where any annotations may have come from.    (012)

John    (013)

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