|From:||Amanda Vizedom <amanda.vizedom@xxxxxxxxx>|
|Date:||Wed, 28 Nov 2012 11:34:39 -0500|
I, at least, am not talking about an ontology without any NL involved. I'm talking only about the advantages, in at least some cases, of moving (the illusion of) NL out of the unique-concept-names. In fact, I think that NL rich and accurate enough to be used for good generation, visualization, parsing, disambiguation, indexing, retrieval, and all those great things is missing and wanted in many ontologies.
I say semi-NL, because to make concept names unique, somewhat disambiguating to core users, and syntactically acceptable, NL-based concept names end up somewhat artificial anyway, not exactly matching NL usage.
I say (the illusion of) NL, because what's captured in these names isn't lexically rich enough or accurate enough to support those great ontology uses I mentioned above.
Concept names can't really do the work of supplying this semantic assignment role. One reason is the complexity, contextuality, and dynamic nature of how linguistic reference and usage really work. Another reason is the tension between the requirements on names - unique, short and manageable in developer tools, unambiguous -- and the nature of NL expressions of a concepts.
So, the question for me is not NL vs no NL. It's how the NL should be incorporated into the ontology. I think that in most cases, if you have diverse users (effectively different NL communities, over language, dialect, domain, role, *or time*), the NL aspect of the ontology needs to be handled in a way that supports processing according to NL principles. It also needs to support things like localization and change (don't want to change IDs because usage changes or new users step in - change/extend the lexical assertions as well.
In short, the argument is not for less NL, it is for more and better. I say this as an ontologist who is *not* a linguist. I've worked on non-toy applications with significant NL mapping requirements, at significant scale. In the process, I've learned a lot about lexicalization of ontology concepts (that is, really, incorporating assertions that map concepts to lexical items) and what the requirements are for doing that in a way that supports good generation, visualization, parsing, disambiguation, indexing, retrieval, and all those great things. The attempt to load the NL into the concept *names*, rather than using mapping assertions (label, usefor, or otherwise), doesn't get you a whole lot of actual semantics and does get you extra problems.
On Wed, Nov 28, 2012 at 8:06 AM, William Frank <williamf.frank@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
I do not understand how, if machine ontologies are nothing but formal relations between expressions, they have any semantic content?
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