IAOA Ontology Terminology Sub-committee wiki home-page    (3F4Z)

Sub-committee for Ontology Terminology - a part of the IAOA Education Committee    (3F50)

 ... ( co-chairs, please check Purple Numbers (Peter's Email, Sept11,2012)
you would need to get rid of the
PurpleNumbers[1] (from the old page [Lexicon] - content migrated on Sept 11, 2012) so that the system can generate
new ones for the migrated content. ... but, for those who are
unfamiliar, we have a tool[2] which will allow one to remove all
PurpleNumbers from the wiki-text of a page (before pasting that to a
new page).

 [1] PurpleNumbers - see:
 [2] "no-purple" - see:
http://community.cim3.net/file/resource/tool_windows/no-purple/    (3F55)

This page is used to organize the IAOA effort to create a lexicon of terms most relevant to applied ontology.    (3F5B)

Participants    (3F5C)

Todd Schneider suggested this project and provided a initial list of terms. This page is intended to collect a list of terms.    (3F5I)

Background    (3F5J)

During this year's IAOA Summer School (2012) the lectures provided a wealth of information about different aspects of ontology. It was clear that each area had an impact or was used by other areas in this interdisciplinary field. Two issues were not completely addressed during these lectures. The first was how the particular area being lectured about impacted or was used by the other areas addressed during the lectures. The second was a clear identification of how various terms were being used and how those uses differed (or not) in the other areas.    (3F5K)

Another aspect of this ambiguity is the need to ease the understanding and acceptance of ontology its paradigms and uses. In trying to explain this interdisciplinary field, or for newcomers, the lack of clear (or at least less ambiguous) 'meanings' of core terms in a discipline that claims to be able to overcome such short comings in other fields is problematic (if not embarrassing). I understand that there exist differences of opinion surrounding some terms or their uses. But ontology is supposed [help] make such things explicit.    (3F5L)

The following diagram was created to provide a simple view of the areas addressed (during the lectures) and their (perceived) relations and also to provide a focus on those areas whose terms need clarification. This was a joint undertaking (prior to dinner on Thursday evening of the summer school).    (3F5M)

http://iaoa.cim3.net/file/pub/Committee/Education/Terminology/AppliedOntology_Consistuents_17Aug2012.png    (3F5N)

Background Addendum    (3K71)

Given the interdisciplinary nature of applied ontology and how it has developed over the last few decades there are many terms used in ambiguous or even inconsistent ways across relevant communities. In order to facilitate and promote the use of applied ontology a consistent set of terms and their interpretations in important.    (3K73)

Plan    (3K74)

Given the limited resources available to develop this list of terminology we will not follow John Sowa's commendable suggestion (below), but proceed from the 'core' terms identified during the 2012 IAOA Summer School.    (3K77)

These 'core' terms constitute part of the metalanguage for applied ontology. Terms having fairly well defined definitions (e.g., provided in standards) need not be considered at this stage of development.    (3K78)

Once these 'core' terms, their definitions, interpretations, and commentary are agreed upon, additional terms can be nominated by IAOA members.    (3K75)

Core Terms    (3F5O)

Please feel free to add to this list (of core terms) and to provide definitions and explanations of these terms. If a term is used in more than one sense or in one or more of the areas listed in the above diagram, please clearly label the sense or area of use and use different bullets to distinguish the different meanings and context of use. E.g.,    (3F5P)

(Depending on the size of the entry it might be best to create a new wiki page for the term.)    (3F5T)

* Category    (3F5U)

  1. A framework for logics[1] standardized in ISO/IEC 24707.    (3F5W)

* Class    (3F5X)

* Concept    (3F60)

* Continuant    (3F61)

* Disposition    (3F62)

* Endurant    (3GCR)

* Essence    (3F66)

* Exemplification    (3F67)

* Instantiation    (3F68)

* Kind    (3F69)

* Logic    (3F6A)

  1. The combination of a formal language with a formal theory of truth or a proof theory (or both).    (3F6B)
  2. The study of arguments, with the intention of describing how to distinguish good arguments from bad arguments. According to the generally accepted usage among philosophers, an argument is valid if (and only if) There are no cases in which the premises of the argument are true, but the conclusion of the argument false. A distinction is often made between valid arguments and cogent arguments. A cogent argument is a valid argument the premises of which are true. These terms only apply to what is called deductive logic, as opposed to inductive forms of reasoning. {nid 3F6C}    (3WIP)
  3. Some logics are classified as monotonic. Monotonic logics fit most closely what most people understand deductive logic to be. Roughly speaking, a logic is monotonic if (and only if) all deductively valid arguments formulated in that logic remain deductively valid, even if new premises are added to such arguments. Non-monotonic logics reflect what most people think of as inductive logic.    (3WIQ)
  4. Deductive reasoning is sometimes described as being most essentially inference from the general to the particular; inductive reasoning is sometimes described as being most essentially inference from the particular to the general. These descriptions are useful, but the two kinds of logic are best understood in terms of the degree of certainty conferred on the conclusion by the premises. Deductive arguments are those in which, in good arguments, the premises confer certainty on their conclusions. Deductive validity as described above embodies this requirement. Inductive arguments are those in which, in good arguments, the premises confer a degree of certainty less than total on their conclusions. In such arguments, the probability of the conclusion follows from the premises.    (3WIR)
  5. Other concepts and terms concerning logic, someone please add to this: propositional calculus (sentential logic), first-order logic, predicate logic, predicate calculus,    (3WIS)

* Mass    (3F6D)

* Member (suggested by Johanna)    (3F6E)

* Metaphysics    (3F6F)

  1. In an Aristotelian tradition, metaphysics comprises two topics: the nature of God, understood as a first cause or "unmoved mover;" and the description of all that is, i.e., ontology.    (3WIT)
  2. Study of things not accessible by the senses. Plato's theory of forms is a paradigm case of a metaphysical theory, because the forms, which are something like universals, cannot be detected by use of any of the 5 senses, and do not exist in space or time. In the first half of the 20th century, "metaphysics" was often used in a derogative sense by philosophers who strongly promoted empiricism. This derogatory sense of the term is becoming weaker as more philosophers take up issues concerning entities that cannot be detected with the sense. For instance, Barry Smith explicitly rejects anti-metaphyical points of view about ontology.    (3WIU)

* Necessity    (3F6G)

* Occurrent    (3F6I)

  1. Synonomous with Perdurant    (3GCU)

* Ontology    (3F6J)

  1. An ONTOLOGY is a representational artifact, comprising a taxonomy as proper part, whose representational units are intended to designate some combination of universals, defined classes, and certain relations between them (Barry Smith, WaclawKusnierczyk, DanielSchober, WernerCeusters).    (3F6K)

* Particular    (3F6N)

  1. entities which have no instances, WonderWeb Deliverable D18.    (3GCY)

* Perdurant    (3F6O)

  1. entities that ‘happen in time’, they extend in time by accumulating different ‘temporal parts’, so that, at any time t at which they exist, only their temporal parts at t are present, WonderWeb Deliverable D18.    (3GCV)
  1. Synonomous with Occurrent.    (3GCW)

* Predicate    (3F6P)

* Property    (3F6Q)

* Quality    (3F6R)

  1. A kind of sensory quality as used in DOLCE is "Quale" (Luc)    (3F6S)
  2. Relation    (3F6T)
  1. An entity we can perceive or measure; qualities are particulars. Qualities inhere to entities: every entity (including qualities themselves) comes with certain qualities, which exist as long as the entity exists, WonderWeb Deliverable D18.    (3GD0)

* Role    (3F6U)

* Semantics    (3F6V)

  1. Meaningless buzz word that can be safely ignored.    (3F6W)
  2. (logic) The semantics of a logic[1] is its formal theory of truth.    (3F6X)
  3. (semiotics) The relationship between a sign of a language to reality; in contrast to its relationship to other signs (syntax) and to the use of the sign (pragmatics).    (3F6Y)

* Sortal    (3F6Z)

* Trope    (3F70)

* Type    (3F71)

  1. "type" for the same reason that the term "set". A type in ontology modeling is a mathematical notion typically expressed at the meta-level (language). With this meaning, it should not be a term for ontological modeling.    (3F72)
    1. (different definition of "type" at the concept level. (entry specification suggested from Richard D.)    (3F73)

* Universal    (3F75)

  1. entities that can have instances, WonderWeb Deliverable D18.    (3GCZ)

Member Comments    (3F79)

Brief summary of the IAOA members' comments posted between Monday 13 and August 15 August, 2012 (members' names mentioned with no reference to titles, surnames introduced only to disambiguate - happy to make revisions in case of compliances)    (3F7A)

MIND / Concept MAP    (3F7B)



Suggestions:    (3F85)

  1. Begin with a compilation of all freely available glossaries
     and lexicons of terms used in theoretical and applied ontology.    (3F86)
  2. The terms should be sorted in alphabetical order.  The entry
     for each term should contain all the definitions from all the
     sources together with any new definitions that any board members
     propose.  Each definition should be annotated with the initials
     of the original source or the board member who proposed it.    (3F87)
  3. Somebody should set up a site (such as a Google docs project)
     to which all IAOA board members would be entitled to make
     additions, revisions, and comments.  The first stage should
     emphasize additions before we make extensive revisions.    (3F88)
  4. When we reach a consensus that the glossary is sufficiently
     complete, reliable, and presentable, it should be exported
     to a publicly available site.    (3F89)
  5. The editing site should be maintained indefinitely for any
     further additions, corrections, or revisions.  Periodically,
     the latest consensus should be exported to the public site.    (3F8A)

(JohnSowa)    (3F8B)

"I suppose one needs as many definitions as necessary to accommodate everyone's concept (!) behind the terms. Giving real (not made-up) example sentences is always a good idea. One can sort these contexts into groups where each group of examples uses the word with the same meaning and differently from the usages in other groups." (Christiane Fellbaum)    (3F8C)


 "My main motivation for suggesting a subcommittee of the Education Committee is that is one way to make fit the effort into the IAOA structure and make it an official IAOA effort. The purpose of the subcommittee would be to provide a forum for a group of people who are committed to contribute to the lexicon." (Fabian)    (3F8E)

"There needs to be Lead Editor (or similar title) who will focus the efforts of producing a product applicable to the larger community of applied ontology and accounting for the sub-domains which constitute this interdisciplinary field." (Todd)    (3F8F)

" Another source input be the ongoing standardisation initiatives, and this should probably be co-ordinated with the standards SIG.    (3F9A)

We probably should have representatives being involved from the main communities, i.e. at least OWL (stable terminology), Common Logic (revision coming up), and DOL (OntoIOp.org, currently under development), and maybe others.    (3F9B)

[...]This could also be an opportunity for the ontology terminology subcommittee to have real impact on the shape of the standards currently under development, and it could also be a chance to harmonise e.g. the CL and DOL terminology, where possible." (Oliver)    (3F9C)

+++ ON 'METAPHYSICS' AND 'ONTOLOGY' IN PHILOSOPHY / a 'side issue' (Luc) +++:    (3F8G)

"[...]    (3F8H)

 I also think it would be helpful if we philosophers were to try and minimize the difficulties for non-philosophers by sticking as much as possible to the term 'ontology' when we speak about ontology.  This should ease communication amongst ontologists in IT and ontologists in philosophy, since that communication is, after all, about ontology, not about metaphysics.  (We philosophers might then use our training to try to argue for the metaphysical preferability of the ontology we propose, but these efforts belong into philosophy)." (Johanna)    (3F8I)

"This in itself is an important bias: that applied (or even "pure") formal ontology is going to be based on, or draw primarily from, a    (3F8J)

 metaphysical view." (Adam)    (3F8K)

"Certainly. However, this will be the case if you use foundational ontologies or the OntoClean methodology in order to build the respective applied ontologies.    (3F8L)

Some people try to do without foundational ontologies or ontology-based methodologies such as OntoClean. But in some sense you will always have to use abstract modeling primitives like "object" or "process", whether implicitly or explicitly. If so, you will do formal ontology, knowingly or unknowingly.    (3F8M)

So, yes, it's a bias - but one that is difficult to avoid." (Luc)    (3F8N)



Maybe we should face from the beginning on the natural scepticism that could arise from attempt to create a lexicon of applied ontology, very much justified by the objective difficulty to mark clear boundaries in and across the entries' definitions.    (3F8T)

In our joint effort, we should keep in mind that: "Lexicon is"    (3F8U)