Dear All, (01)
There are several different areas related to units, which include: (02)
0) A framework ontology covering:
- generic concepts such as: quantity, "quantities of the same kind", unit,
- basic scientific quantities, such as mass, length, time-duration, energy;
- SI units for the basic scientific quantities. (03)
1) The many thousands of different units for basic scientific quantities
which are used in different parts of engineering and business, such as
furlong, hectare, BTU, US survey foot. There are also measures for "amount
of stuff", such as bolt of cloth, which are specific to particular industries. (04)
2) "Difficult quantities/properties" such as those in materials science -
tensile strengths, hardnesses, etc. The result of a high precision
temperature measurement is also a "difficult quantity/property", because it
is measured according to ITS90. (05)
3) Properties at a particular state, such as "dynamic viscosity at 20
degrees C". Here the quantity is simple, but the value is for a state which
the fluid is not necessarily in. (06)
There is a pressing need to solve business requirements in area (1) now!
Fortunately this area is straightforward, and does not rely crucially on
area (0) which is difficult. I think that this is consistent with Howard's
initial comment. Howard's point 1 is about how the work in area (1) is managed. (07)
Work on area (0) is probably necessary to put work in areas (2) and (3) on a
firm foundation. This will take longer but needs to start. (08)
p.s. Properties at a particular state, such as "dynamic viscosity at 20
degrees C", are very common on engineering data sheets, but many engineering
data representation standards do not address them explicitly. I am sure that
ISO 15926 can define and record such properties, but as far as I am aware
there is no document that specifies how exactly. (010)
At 17:06 13/05/2009 -0700, you wrote:
>Some comments inline:
>On 5/13/09 4:19 PM, "Mason, Howard (UK)" <Howard.Mason@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
>> The standard ontology for units would seem to be a quick win, based on
>> the fact that the area does not need much research, even though there
>> are obviously wide ranges of opinions on structure.
>DN : agree
>> Point 1 - I sincerely hope that the requirement for the new unit is
>> addressed by at most one standards body, in order to avoid future
>> harmonisation (= someone has to change and someone has to pay). The
>> most appropriate standards group will be the one which recognises the
>> requirement - for snails, perhaps the ISO TC on food, rather than units.
>DN: I don't think anyone is talking about creating new units here. What is
>being discussed is a higher level conceptualization of the units of measure
>domain so that things like "furlongs per fortnight" can be quantified as a
>unit of "speed" which in essence will be a specific term representing the
>concept of "linear displacement over time". If the upper ontology is
>completed for UoM then all existing measurement standards could map to the
>ontology which could probably aide international trade in terms of
>> Point 2 - the consensus process in standards bodies will require that
>> the proposed task has sufficient support, in terms of a positive vote
>> and a threshold of interested stakeholders, before effort is expended.
>> This avoids the creation of frivolous new work items which move at said
>> snail's pace.
>DN: Are you suggesting standards bodies work slowly? Surely this cannot be
>> Point 3 - great care should be taken to avoid damage from biting when
>> speaking with tongue inserted that far into cheek.
>DN: yep. <ouch!>
>> Howard Mason
>> Corporate IT Office
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>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: ontology-summit-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> [mailto:ontology-summit-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of John F.
>> Sent: 13 May 2009 20:25
>> To: Peter.Benson@xxxxxxxxx; Ontology Summit 2009
>> Cc: Gerry.Radack@xxxxxxx
>> Subject: Re: [ontology-summit] Progressing a Units Ontology - Now
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>>> last I looked there are 2,632 units of measure listed in the > eOTD
>> would you like an extract (Gerry probably has one already)?
>> Does it include the ever popular unit *furlongs per fortnight* which is
>> approximately 0.0001663095 meter per second?
>> It is useful for quantifying that informal term 'a snail's pace'.
>> You may think it's frivolous, but Google has 6,750 hits for "furlongs
>> per fortnight", 421,000 for "snail's pace", and
>> 236 hits for the phrase "snail race" with the word "furlongs".
>> Clearly, this is an example of a special-purpose domain that the
>> standards bodies should not ignore.
>> John (011)
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