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Re: [MODS] Mark Twain Rides Again (was Re: [MODS] MADS/RDF for review)

From: Simon Spero <ses@unc.edu>
Date: Mon, 3 Jan 2011 19:06:26 -0500
Message-ID: <AANLkTin5NW5LH7_rURoWYj2orTUD13dPj6DjMjpUKTjc@mail.gmail.com>
To: Dan Brickley <danbri@danbri.org>
Cc: Antoine Isaac <aisaac@few.vu.nl>, Metadata Object Description Schema List <MODS@listserv.loc.gov>, public-lld <public-lld@w3.org>
In Mon, Jan 3, 2011 at 9:26 AM, Dan Brickley <danbri@danbri.org> wrote:

> (sorry, resending from better address)

Sounds plausible to me, though I'm missing a bit of context. I'm still
>> tempted to throw a 'names as first class things' into the next FOAF revision
>> btw; those use cases keep cropping up.
>>
>
Names are first class things,  and you can "quote" me on that...


> Imagine if your natural language dictionary had a little footnote against
>> every term ("you can use this term when saying things that aren't strictly,
>> literally true"). Pretty redundant! Same goes for RDF perhaps.
>>
>
As you mention, this is a part of a bigger problem in RDF - it lacks both
default reasoning and Micro theories, which means you have to do a lot of
extra work when dealing with fictional, hypothetical, or inconsistent
things.  Ontology is supposed to be On What There Is; in these cases it's
easy to end up in WTF...

In Cyc, predicates are true (or default true) only relative to a specified
context, or Micro Theory.  Different micro theories make incompatible
assertions, and theories can be nested with multiple inheritance. For
example, rules stating that supernatural things are fictional is not made in
the base knowledge base, but it is in the Naturalism microtheory.  Different
cultural groups have different assumptions as to which supernatural things
exist. Most make C'thulhu laugh in his sleep.

It's important to be know the context in which assertions are made,
especially if they are hypothetical.  For example, if one part of an
organization had developed plans for a variety of tasks, and had figured out
how many people would be needed to perform those tasks, other parts of that
organization would need to know that that these were just hypothetical
plans, and not current head counts that should be used for to calculate
payroll.

Pulling the topic back from possible worlds to the bibliographic universe,
 current practice handles keeps fictional and mythological characters out of
the Name file (except for our friendly ghosts (and one holy one -
http://viaf.org/viaf/73945424/rdf.xml)).  Off-campus crusaders, like "Batman
(Fictitious character)", are handled as general topics, not as names, which
means that they are far less likely to be available as controlled access
points.

 There are also Imaginary places, but then we're getting back into Earth-1
and Earth-2 (or maybe Earth-616?)

Simon // who wants to publish a book and claim it was dictated by the spirit
of Batman, just to see what happens.
Received on Tuesday, 4 January 2011 00:07:00 GMT

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