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Re: [ontolog-forum] SME (subject matter experts) and Ontology developeme

To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: John F Sowa <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 15 Mar 2015 23:41:38 -0400
Message-id: <550650F2.70502@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Dear Matthew,    (01)

> For the future, I believe that we can and should develop*automated* or
> at least *semi-automated* tools that can help extract the underlying
> assumptions from anyone -- even a SME.    (02)

> I admire the ambition.  Generally, you can only automate things where
> you have reliable and repeatable procedures. We don't. At best we have
> methodologies that need training in, and experience of execution before a
> new member of the fraternity can be welcomed. Indeed at present if I had to
> choose one of the SME or KE to develop an ontology for a domain, I'd go for
> the KE. It will generally be easier for him to become an expert in some
> domain, than for the SME to become a KE.    (03)

I agree.  But there are huge numbers of tasks that could benefit from
ontologies, but only large corporations or governments can afford to
train KEs to that level of expertise.  Even large businesses don't
use ontologies as well or as often as they could because they require
a very clear "business case" before they would consider that expense.    (04)

Hashtags and folksonomies are a "poor man's" replacement for ontologies.
The next step up are things like Schema.org, which are slightly more
than systematic terminologies.  There are millions of people on that
continuum from hashtags to folksonomies to Schema.org to the highly
structured ontologies used at Shell.    (05)

And there are many people (VivoMind included) that are designing novel
technologies for addressing the continuum.  For examples, look at the
methods for automatically extracting ontologies from documents:
http://www.jfsowa.com/talks/goal7.pdf    (06)

This is still a research area, but work is proceeding at many
institutions.  I expect the new tools to revolutionize the methods
of software design and development.  The examples in goal7.pdf are
promising steps.  And such tools can also be used to enable today's
KEs to address new areas of expertise more rapidly and thoroughly.    (07)

John    (08)

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