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

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: William Frank <williamf.frank@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sat, 17 Mar 2012 10:38:05 -0400
Message-id: <CALuUwtAXLtQNRP-31=8fMKoQMvPMUWsZpjOYTML4wj2y93eHNA@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
I think, as I take ptyson to be saying, that the semantics with which URIs that fully use their syntactic muscles can be endowed are the right kind  for our work, while the official semantics of UML make that UML semantics a dead end, hanging off the end of an aging  programming style. 

Otoh, it does seem to me that there is an immense focus in RDF (and even OWL) on syntax.  Another "syntax first and mostly" effort.  I think the W3C first made the right choice: let's use the centuries of knowledge of logic, instead of thinking we are the betters of Aristotle and Frege and Tarski, while the OMG made a very bad choice at the same juncture.  But the W3C did not follow through, as I take jsowa to be saying.    And, we could have a unified diagramming techniques, which would be much better for communications among people trying to model concepts,rather than that being an afterthought.

Most broadly, a computer-oriented syntax like XML, that people 'can' read, but is quite cumbersome for them, suggests that the Web itself owns the future, and not the people who serve it, who have to learn ITS language.   (Just as the world had to learn english, and now people say its time to learn Chinese, nope, its time to learn XML, is the message I see in this.)

I think that information politics, that ptyson alludes to, is sadly not off the topic, also that being academic sticklers for every word everyone uses, (important in standards documents, but in emails?), instead of taking a generous view of others' intents, and the arrogance of standards bodies, has brought us to this tragic state of affairs.

I think I mostly agree with what you said in those two sentences. UML
shines for software modeling but as you noted the Semantic Web aims to
accommodate everything so once you have modeled the software aspects of
SW, UML won't carry you much farther.

The official UML semantics is just about software.  It is a model of class -oriented programming languages.  But to me this is the tragedy of UML - for example, thinking that types of things and the things need to be in different models, and to have different names for each -- messages are classes, signals are objects, -- how could a child learn such a language, where the concept of a "dog" was called "dog", but if we pointed to one, it would be called a "scroogle", because it is an instance of dog, and not the concept of dog.  In the real world, dogs are not instantiated by the concept of dog, they are instantiated by mother dogs.   To me, this idea of aping the programming notions of raw Java was a tragedy. One I  tried to avert.  

 But you don't have to pay attention to the official semantics, UML has become a kind of natural language, with different dialects everywhere.  Many use UML for conceptual models.

[pt]Do you have some examples of tool integration? I must be near another
main stream because none of the big projects I have worked on in the
last decade have made a serious effort to use UML.

Am I wrong, is model driven archiecture and development is dead?   Are the tools and companies for executable UML dead or dying, are they not used in big projects.    I would guess on Web-oriented projects,they are not.
I think we have many worlds that don't connect well, just like all other ever-more-fragmented, super-specialized things in the modern world, and that this is too bad.   I even found that two worlds that are so arcane, small and tightly entwined as logic and proof theory, on the one hand, and metamathematics and model theory, on the other, had trouble on this forum, over the two meanings of "complete", when each meaning is appropriate in and only too its own domain.

> [js]If the W3C had adopted UML diagrams in 1998, the Semantic Web would
> have been integrated with mainstream IT a dozen years ago.

They could have adopted the rich diagramming tehniques, but not the official UML semantics.    I think W3C did the sensible thing, that the OMG should have done, and said, there is more than a century of logic behind us, a towering accomplishment of scientific geniuses.  We are engineers, let's use it. 

But also, The W3C could also have done the integrative collaborative thing, and said, let's reuse the existing, widely used graphical representations, instead of making up our own. (So could the Component Architecture people have, etc.)  So now, we have more divergence, maybe because of more information politics. 

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