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Re: [ontolog-forum] Visual Notation for OWL Ontologies (VOWL)

To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: Kingsley Idehen <kidehen@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 15 May 2014 16:03:57 -0400
Message-id: <53751DAD.1080205@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
On 5/15/14 1:26 PM, John F Sowa wrote:
> Kingsley and Ed,
> KI
>> Could one consider an RDF triple as a digital CNL that's actually human
>> comprehensible?
> The short answer is yes, but with qualifications.  There are some
> humans who consider the TCP/IP packets to be comprehensible.    (01)

True, but I am specifically honing in to the fact that an RDF statement 
is simply a triple (3-tuple) based representation of CNL parts of 
speech: subject, predicate, object.    (02)

It's very easy (as long as you don't have RDF/XML and similar blurry 
notations) map a CNL sentence to an RDF statement using notations such 
as Turtle, as was demonstrated in the thread about a Squid [1].    (03)

> Longer answer:
> The three parts of a triple can be expressed in any suitable format.
> Most URIs aren't widely comprehensible, but it's possible to map them
> to more broadly comprehensible words or phrases.    (04)

But in RDF the IRIs are opaque.    (05)

In RDF based Linked Data the HTTP URIs (a kind of IRI functioning as 
terms) adds name/address duality to the mix via implicit or explicit 
indirection:    (06)

1. denotation
2. addressing/locating -- the lookup mechanism or obtaining a 
description of what's denoted (identifier's referent).    (07)

Most don't really decompose the URIs (or any other identifiers) into :    (08)

<#johnSowa> denotes [ a foaf:Person .
                                       foaf:name "John Sowa" .
                                     ] .    (09)

They perceive and process:    (010)

<#johnSowa> foaf:name "John Sowa" .    (011)

This is because an implementer of an RDF processor makes an 
implementation based commitment  to *implicit* denotation by IRI (or 
indirectly, in pronoun fashion, via blank node identifiers).    (012)

Thus, it's safe to assume that:    (013)

<#johnSowa> a foaf:Person .
<#johnSowa> foaf:name "John Sowa" .    (014)

implies:    (015)

An entity exists, that is a of type Person, with the name  John Sowa .    (016)

which is very understandable by a literate person.    (017)

People literate in any language apply implicit denotation as the norm. 
The explicit stuff happens in our brains, as far as I suspect.    (018)

>   It's also possible
> to add more NL syntax to improve readability.    (019)

Yes, naturally.    (020)

> I am a strong believer in Wittgenstein's theory of "language games.
> (For an intro, see http://www.jfsowa.com/talks/goal4.pdf )
> In LW's terms, a natural language is the totality of all language games
> that can be played with a given syntax and vocabulary.  In that sense,
> every CNL that uses the syntax and vocabulary of some NL is a *subset*
> of that NL.
> Different CNLs of the same NL may use different subsets, but anyone who
> can read that NL can read any CNL of that NL without being aware of the
> boundaries of that CNL.  But -- and this is a very big **BUT** -- it is
> much harder for people who know the NL to stay within the boundaries
> of a CNL with they try to speak it or write it.    (021)

Sure.    (022)

--     (023)

Regards,    (024)

Kingsley Idehen 
Founder & CEO
OpenLink Software
Company Web: http://www.openlinksw.com
Personal Weblog: http://www.openlinksw.com/blog/~kidehen
Twitter Profile: https://twitter.com/kidehen
Google+ Profile: https://plus.google.com/+KingsleyIdehen/about
LinkedIn Profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/kidehen    (025)

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