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Re: [ontolog-forum] Watchout Watson: Here comes Amazon Machine Learning

To: Thomas Johnston <tmj44p@xxxxxxx>, "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, Matthew West <dr.matthew.west@xxxxxxxxx>
From: "Obrst, Leo J." <lobrst@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 3 May 2015 21:13:00 +0000
Message-id: <CY1PR09MB08264050F4D1C750A084677DDDD30@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

IKL stands for Interoperable Knowledge Representation for Intelligence Support (IKRIS) Knowledge Language (IKL). 


From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Thomas Johnston
Sent: Sunday, May 03, 2015 11:57 AM
To: Matthew West; '[ontolog-forum] '
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Watchout Watson: Here comes Amazon Machine Learning - ZDNet-2015.04.10




I confess to total ignorance of IKL. I don't even know what the acronym stands for.


My tritemporal theory is an extension of the work on bitemporal databases done by a good-size research community, principal among those researches Dr. Rick Snodgrass. And it is thus an extension of the standardization of that bitemporal theory which now exists in the ISO SQL standard -- ISO 9075:2011, and is now implemented in DB2, Teradata and Oracle.


Perhaps I can begin to bring to the attention of researchers in both fields areas where their interests overlap. I have certainly found my own work in ontology to be essential to my development of theories of managing temporal data.





On Sunday, May 3, 2015 3:45 AM, Matthew West <dr.matthew.west@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:


Dear Thomas,

It seems to me that this is addressing the same issues that IKL addresses, but perhaps from a different perspective. Would you agree?




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From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Thomas Johnston
Sent: 02 May 2015 21:23
To: Thomas Johnston; Obrst, Leo J.; [ontolog-forum]; [ontolog-forum]
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Watchout Watson: Here comes Amazon Machine Learning - ZDNet-2015.04.10


And now I can tie my discussion of temporal data back to Rich's concept of fluents, and to the more general concept of indexicals.


A valid time period ("state time period" in my book) defines the time period during which whatever is described by a row in a table was/is/will be in the state ascribed to it by the columns of that table.


A transaction time period ("inscription time period" in my book) defines the time period which begins when a row is physically created and ends when the row is logically deleted (i.e. marked as deleted, but left in the table so that history is retained).


A speech act time period is what I called an "assertion time period" in my first book. But that book was based on the mistaken idea that the time during which someone was/is/will be willing to assert that the statement made by a row in a table was/is/will be (in state time) true could substitute for the standard concept of transaction time. 


The substitution extended the concept of transaction time by allowing rows in tables to be created with future transaction/assertion time periods. Future transaction time is an oxymoron, which is why it has always been disallowed. But future assertion time clearly is not-- thus demonstrating that the two concepts are distinct, and that I should not have conflated them.


So speech acts are the public expressions of propositional attitudes. (Don't know if anyone else has put it that way, but it seems right to me.) The two speech acts relevant to the management of temporal data are (i) asserting that a row (the statement/proposition expressed by that inscription) represents ("makes") a true statement, and (ii) withdrawing a previous assertion.


Extension to other propositional attitudes -- assent, belief, doubt, etc. -- would be useful, I think, but I only alluded to it in my second  book (see especially Ch.19).


The other thing I did in that second book was provide a metamodel which incorporates statements themselves as managed object (represented by entities in logical data models, by tables in databases). I don't know of any other databases that do this. The temporal extent of a statement, in a set of databases, begins when its first inscription is created, and ends when its last inscription is deleted.


And, by the same token, that metamodel incorporates propositional attitudes (associated with the persons or groups whose attitudes they are, e.g. the attitudes of the corporation who owns the database) with statements. The temporal extent of a party/propositional attitude/statement in a set of databases, of course, begins with the first assertion (or other propositional attitude) of that statement by that party, and ends with the assertion withdrawal by that party of that statement.


I note also that by reifying statements themselves (and not just their inscriptions, as is done everywhere else), it becomes possible to track both inscription (statement token) provenance, and also statement (type) provenance.


So: fluents. The three time attached to rows in relational tables resolve three different indexicals associated with those rows. Lacking such resolution, we all in fact understand these three kinds of time to be relativized to Now() in non-temporal tables.


For example: let a row in a Customer table be [C123 | Smith | Platinum], with C123 the primary key, "Smith" the customer's name, and "Platinum" the customer's status. We know who we are talking about. But:

  • When did/does/will C123 have that name and that status? i.e. when will C123 be in that state? Standard bitemporal theory and my own agree on this, but they call it the "valid time" during which that customer was in that state, and I call it the "state time". Without state time being explicitly included in the row, we all understand that what is meant is "right now" (and until I update the database to indicate a change of C123's state).
  • When did the database include that row as part of the current information content in that table? (Let's say that the row was originally entered with "Smythe" instead of "Smith", and was corrected a week later. For the first week, the "Smythe" row was part of the then-current information content; after that week, it no longer was.) Without inscription time being explicitly included in the row, we all understand what what is meant is "right now" (and until I update the database).
  • Current computer science takes it (i.e. implicitly assumes) that their transaction time is co-extensive with my assertion time (now called "speech act time"). But it's not. We can inscribe a statement token before we are ready to say that it represents a true statement. So we must be able to enter a row into a table and somehow specify that our assertion that it makes a true statement is deferred for some time. But without assertion time, the best we can do is assume that we will not inscribe a row until we are willing to assert that it says something true. After a career in commercial IT, I can tell you that this assumption makes it impossible to express a lot of things in databases that businesses would ask for (if only they knew enough to ask for it). Lots of examples, BTW, in both books.

Like anyone with an idea, I see a lot of possibilities for it. Part 1 of MTRD, plus Chapter 19 are my currently published expressio of the idea. But by summarizing bits and pieces of it (another piece is my notion of an upper-level ontology common to all relational databases, a notion that Matthew West seems skeptical of), I hope to garner valuable criticism.










On Saturday, May 2, 2015 3:47 PM, Thomas Johnston <tmj44p@xxxxxxx> wrote:




A more succinct account than mine, and one that doesn't drop anything out.


Again, I recommend the SEP article, which will presumably explain the concept as it is used in logic and in logic-based approaches to semantics.





On Saturday, May 2, 2015 2:41 PM, "Obrst, Leo J." <lobrst@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:


I think Thomas is thinking of indexicals as indexes (contextual indices) that fix a statement (proposition?) in a particular set of possible worlds.


But I might be mistaken.





From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Rich Cooper
Sent: Saturday, May 02, 2015 1:06 PM
To: 'Thomas Johnston'; '[ontolog-forum] '
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Watchout Watson: Here comes Amazon Machine Learning - ZDNet-2015.04.10


Thomas and John,


Please define the word "indexicality" as you are using it.  I think you mean the binding between FOL variables and their substituted constants but the term itself is not used much in engineering AFAIK.



Rich Cooper,

Rich Cooper,


Chief Technology Officer,

MetaSemantics Corporation

MetaSemantics AT EnglishLogicKernel DOT com

( 9 4 9 ) 5 2 5-5 7 1 2


From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Thomas Johnston
Sent: Saturday, May 02, 2015 9:17 AM
To: [ontolog-forum]
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Watchout Watson: Here comes Amazon Machine Learning - ZDNet-2015.04.10




The classical definition of a statement, as I understand it, is that it is a declarative sentence with all indexicals resolved. So, as a statement, a fluent is a statement schema such that resolving its temporal indexical produces a statement. (If we move on to propositions, we get into some deep issues, such as whether or not any propositions can change their truth values over time.) In other words, a fluent is a family of statements all identical except for the point or period of time associated with them.


Sounds like an interesting concept. More generally, we can conceive of a statement-family as a statement schema in which one or more indexicals are not resolved -- place, time, person, perhaps even propositional attitude.


Are such statement families worth reifying? Or is it enough simply to understand that many apparent statements are not statements because of indexicality?





On Saturday, May 2, 2015 10:11 AM, John F Sowa <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:


Rich and Tom,

> I think you are describing what is best represented as fluents in the
> table.  A "fluent" row comprises the predicate's specified value of
> true or false, and its parametric bindings to objects and properties.

> Which suggests that I must currently fail to understand what you mean
> by "fluents". Can you enlighten me?

The term 'fluent' was introduced by John McCarthy and Pat Hayes in the
classic paper "Some philosophical problems from the standpoint of AI":

JMC & PJH (1969) http://www-formal.stanford.edu/jmc/mcchay69.pdf
> A fluent is a function whose domain is the space Sit of situations.

For example, the sentence "It is raining" is a _propositional fluent_.
For any situation in which it is raining, that fluent has value true.

Another fluent is the phrase 'the president', which depends on the
organization and the time.  For the situation of the USA at this moment,
the value of that fluent is a human named Barack Obama.

The term 'fluent' is a useful generic for many terms that have the
modifier 'context dependent'.  For related documents, search for the
word 'context' in http://www.jfsowa.com/ikl/ .






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