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RE: NPR, Godel, Semantic Web

It would depend on the consequent of not having 
the right answer in the action domain.  If the 
wrong answer isn't too far from the right answer, 
it may mean very little.   Completeness and 
adequacy are logistical problems.  

What kind of right answer? 

My thumb and your thumb are pretty good 
for guessing the height of a horse, but not so 
good for measuring the diameter of the moon.

As for the cat on the radio, go get him!


Ekam sat.h, Vipraah bahudhaa vadanti.
Daamyata. Datta. Dayadhvam.h

-----Original Message-----
From: Simon St.Laurent [mailto:simonstl@simonstl.com]

At 12:47 PM 5/7/01 -0400, Simon St.Laurent wrote:
>At 11:14 AM 5/7/01 -0500, Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:
> >The semantic web doesn't trip on godel or
> >incompleteness.   It trips on authority.
>It may well trip on authority, but this claim suggests that it also trips
>on inherent limitations of logical processing.

I should clarify this claim as it was made on the radio.

It's not that such systems will return wrong answers - it's that there are 
right answers they cannot find.  How that would echo through a system or 
whether users would even notice the missing information isn't clear.

Again, if anyone has a better explanation, I'd love to see one.  Otherwise, 
I guess I'll be calling NPR to track down the mathematician they were 

Simon St.Laurent - Associate Editor, O'Reilly & Associates
XML Elements of Style / XML: A Primer, 2nd Ed.
XHTML: Migrating Toward XML
http://www.simonstl.com - XML essays and books

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