Dear John, (01)
I think we may be at cross purposes about what Big Systems means. You seem
to be suggesting CYC as a Big System we should be looking at, and I do not
deny that it is a big system, and we could look at it as a system, but the
kinds of big systems I am more interested in are refineries and aircraft
carriers and aircraft. And I did take a particular example of what you find
there and work it up to discover the life history and existence criteria of
a systems component. (02)
That is one of the kinds of thing we are looking at on tracks 1&2. (03)
Large Scale Applications is the track where the kinds of questions you are
posing are being dealt with, and I believe they are already looking in to
giving CYC some coverage, which would be good. (04)
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> -----Original Message-----
> From: ontology-summit-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ontology-summit-
> bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of John F. Sowa
> Sent: 30 January 2012 06:02
> To: ontology-summit@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: Re: [ontology-summit] System Components
> Dear Matthew,
> I certainly agree with that point:
> > Ontologists need to step up to the mark here and provide proper
> > for system components.
> But it is just part of the *disconnect* between semantic technology and
> mainstream AI.
> > if ontology is going to gain traction within the systems world, it
> > to get a better understanding of this central idea in systems
> I also agree with that point. But trying to state abstract definitions
> about systems is not going to bring ontologies into the mainstream.
> Just look at the tools and methodologies that people use to build large
> systems. Those methodologies don't begin with definitions. They start
> by providing the tools to build systems.
> Aristotle defined the first upper level category, but in his writings
> on biology, he took a bottom-up approach. Instead of stating top-
> down definitions, he said that the first thing to do is to examine
> actual specimens and describe them precisely. The generalizations
> only come *after* you have a sufficient number of specimens from
> which you can generalize.
> That is the point I've been trying to get across: we need to start
> with examining actual cases. That's why I suggested Cyc as a place
> to start. When they first started to implement applications, they
> *failed*. They had to go through quite a few iterations before
> they could connect their abstract ontology to real applications.
> That's also why I suggested that we ask Bill A. to talk about their
> experiences because they tried to learn from their experiences with
> And when they started their new business, they had to go through
> several iterations in their methodology they got it right.
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