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Re: [ontology-summit] Offline note. Re: First Model Bench Challenge

To: ontology-summit@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: John F Sowa <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 21 May 2012 17:27:54 -0400
Message-id: <4FBAB35A.3090909@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Dear Ramayya,    (01)

Thank you for the pointers to the vast literature on Indian studies
in logic, epistemology, classification, and related fields.  I have
read a fair amount of that literature, but I am certainly not an
expert in the field, and I appreciate references to relevant material.    (02)

In particular, the work on grammar by Pāṇini in the 6th century BC
is more advanced than any other work on syntax before the 20th c.
For natural language processing, it still has some advantages over
phrase-structured grammars for languages with free word order.
But I was not focusing on syntax in this tutorial.    (03)

In logic, the work of the Nyaya school is also important, but the
connection to the Greek work is uncertain.  There were many influences
among all the early civilizations over the past five thousand years,
especially since merchants, soldiers, and philosophers were traveling
between China, India, Europe, and Africa for thousands of years.    (04)

Since the Nyaya writings date from the 2nd century AD and Aristotle
wrote his texts in the 4th century BC, there was plenty of time for
some influences to travel back and forth.    (05)

I also agree that Ranganathan's faceted classification for library
science is much more flexible than the simple tree structures of
most hierarchies.  But I would treat it as a special case of the
lattice-based methods, which originated with Lull and Leibniz.
It has many interesting features in its own right, but the basic
patterns are covered by the work on lattices, such as the tools
for Formal Concept Analysis (FCA).  I had hoped to say more about
lattices, but I already have much more than 3 hours of material.    (06)

In any case these slides are primarily a tutorial on patterns of
knowledge representation.  I have omitted 99.9% of the interesting
historical matter.  The selections I chose are ones that illustrate
basic principles that shed light on the technology for semantic
systems.  Many people enjoy the historical sidelights, but others
get impatient with too much historical matter.    (07)

> May I suggest using a single Concept Map <http://cmap.ihmc.us/>
> either at the beginning or at the end of the tutorial to pull
> all the concepts together and show their relationships?    (08)

I discussed concept maps in my CS book in 1984, and I still believe
that they're useful.  But a single concept map of all the topics I
discuss in those slides would be so cluttered that it would take
more time to discuss than I could devote to it.    (09)

There is a big difference between tools that are useful for
a student and tools that are useful for a teacher.  A well-designed
tool that allows a student to follow a concept map or topic map
at his or her own pace can be very helpful.  But it's much harder
for a lecturer to use such a map effectively during a presentation.    (010)

John    (011)

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