SUO: Re: single vs. multiple ontology standard
Here's the message that I sent to John that you were cc'ed on that
summarized previously stated arguments for a single ontology. Just to
note, any standard has conformance requirements, and this need not be
framed as "forcing" anything.
>Date: Thu, 06 Sep 2001 20:41:35 -0700
>To: "John F. Sowa" <email@example.com>
>From: Adam Pease <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Subject: Re: single vs. multiple ontology standard
>Cc: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org,
> There are several reasons, some of which are reasons why a single
> ontology might be considered better, others are evidence that it is
> possible (or at least not impossible).
>1. A standard with many choices is necessarily a less useful
>standard. Instead of building tools that support one data model, multiple
>models have to be supported in order to be compliant.
>2. People have to make more choices with a multiple ontology
>standard. In order to choose intelligently they should understand all the
>alternatives and when to apply them (this is a weaker argument than the
>one above because it's going to be a significant job just to learn to
>apply one ontology right, but, just the same...)
>3. Despite advertising to the contrary, Cyc doesn't not contain any truly
>alternative theories or contradictions. In fact, the entire upper
>ontology is in one context (baseKB). Like or dislike Cyc, there's an
>existence proof that it's possible to build a single coherent upper ontology.
>4. No one has yet shown that there are two truly incompatible and equally
>valid theories that we need to include. I realize that Pat might
>reasonably disagree with this, but we simply haven't reached the
>conclusion of our discussion on 3d vs 4d. Each of us takes a different
>view on who has the burden of proof naturally.
At 11:49 AM 9/10/2001 -0500, pat hayes wrote:
>> First, please let's acknowledge the validity of each others'
>> views. There have been serious arguments for what you term the
>> monolithic approach.
>Adam, could you cite those arguments? You have always steadfastly CLAIMED
>that a monolithic appraoch was of utility, but the only actual ARGUMENT I
>am aware of is the observation that CYC uses that approach, which is taken
>as a kind of existence proof that it is possible. And that, pathetic as it
>is, is the only actual argument I have heard you, or anyone, use.
>This is not to impugne your right to hold to your opinion, Adam, to
>emphasise the point. The issue is over "serious arguments", not opinions.
>>If more people on the SUO list want a modular approach then they should
>>be free to pursue that. That is what I'm proposing, that each set of
>>people pursue the approach they're interested in instead of trying to
>>force their views on each other.
>Since the basic issue seems to me to be that the 'monolithic' approach
>amounts to the imposition of a single view, and the 'modular' appraoch
>seeks to find a mechanism to accommodate several views without trying to
>force one of them on the others, this proposal of yours has a rather
>hollow ring to it.
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