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Re: [ontolog-forum] Data, Silos, Interoperability, and Agility

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: David Eddy <deddy@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 27 Sep 2013 19:34:30 -0400
Message-id: <661BDCD3-466B-43C8-9B3B-400085788334@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
John -

On Sep 27, 2013, at 6:44 PM, John Bottoms wrote:

In looking at taxonomy papers that have been published recently, it is apparent that the definition and use of the term "taxonomy" is malleable.

Frankly I prefer "malleable" to "hierarchical."

As useful as taxonomies are, their adherence to hierarchies just is not realistic in the context of legacy systems.  Language, particularly the sort of language used in & around legacy systems—which are often a very squishy collection of other legacy systems—simply are NOT hierarchical. 

The idea of having the same hierarchical terminology across collections of legacy systems is silly.  Appealing idea in theory, just doesn't work.

The last thing you want to do with the folks who support legacy systems is to tell them their language is inadequate & needs to be replaced with something "better."

David Eddy
Babson Park, MA


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