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   Re: [xml-dev] Beyond Ontologies

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Simon St.Laurent wrote:

>Technically, ontologies can certainly change.  Culturally, however, the
>paeans to ontologies that I see appear driven by a deep need for a sense
>of stability at least, a sense of monolithic truth at worst.
Not the paens of OWL. OWL is explicitly designed to allow ontologies to 
extend other ontologies -- perhaps that is OWL's claim to fame in ontoland.

Now certainly there is Cyc, and the SUO effort, but don't mistake OWL 
for either. It's designed along the loosey goosey RDF idea that "anyone 
can say anything about anything". Particularly OWL Full, that's what 
makes it so computationaly difficult. It turns out that if you limit 
what folks can say (in certain ways) that you make an impossible 
computational problem -> possible. i.e. the difference between n-th 
order logic and description logic.

>Economically, the whole thing is sold as "once you do this, you'll be
>able to make all your information meaningful at low low cost", and I'm
>not sure that's compatible with regular change.
Perhaps. Perhaps that will be a cost of extensibility, sort of like the 
difference between machine code and high level languages in terms of 
computational efficiency. Perhaps we'll develop ontology tools that will 
solve these issues.



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