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RE: A precedent suggesting a compromise for the SWHCLS IG Best Practices (ARK)

From: Miller, Michael D (Rosetta) <Michael_Miller@Rosettabio.com>
Date: Fri, 11 Aug 2006 12:50:09 -0700
To: wangxiao@musc.edu
cc: public-semweb-lifesci@w3.org, www-tag@w3.org
Message-ID: <E1GBd1O-00039r-8R@maggie.w3.org>

Hi Xiaoshu,

Here's where we have a bit of a different viewpoint.

> The problem is that semantic web is intended to make machine to 
> understand.  

I would say that the purpose of the semantic web is to increase the sum
of knowledge for use by the human practitioners.  If only a machine
understood, it would only be useful to the machine.

Now the more the underlying infrastructure makes it easy for a machine
to understand, the easier the job is for people like us who are trying
to enable the semantic web to get useful results from the machine and
create applications that translate the results for the human
practitioners.

> And
> the clarity is a prerequisite to instruct machine unambiguously.

There is still no clarity in the Life Sciences as to what is a gene and,
more so, what is an instance of a particular gene.  This, mostly, has
lead to the situation in the Life Sciences where there is a welter of
not exactly consistent consensus on what constitutes a precise
definition of the genome for a particular species.

In a domain where clarity isn't easily obtained and where ambiguity
lies, it is up to those who program the machines to cope with that
existing ambiguity.  Even with the current state there are ways to glean
extremely useful information, if the machines are programmed properly
for the information source, it is just not as clean as against nice and
tidy ontologies.

And the true end users, the ones who use google and would use the
semantic web if they didn't have to understand how it works, would
expect that these invaluable, if tangled, gene resources, are part of
what is supported.

cheers,
Michael

> -----Original Message-----
> From: wangxiao@musc.edu [mailto:wangxiao@musc.edu] 
> Sent: Thursday, August 10, 2006 6:55 PM
> To: Miller, Michael D (Rosetta)
> Cc: Alan Ruttenberg; Mark Wilkinson; 
> public-semweb-lifesci@w3.org; www-tag@w3.org
> Subject: RE: A precedent suggesting a compromise for the 
> SWHCLS IG Best Practices (ARK)
> 
> 
> Quoting "Miller, Michael D (Rosetta)" <Michael_Miller@Rosettabio.com>:
> 
> > You're correct here but it is the state of the art.  Interestingly
> > enough, I've found that in general the biology-based scientists and
> > investigators are not all that bothered by this confusion 
> and despite
> > the confusion seem to make their way through it.
> 
> The problem is that semantic web is intended to make machine to 
> understand.  And
> the clarity is a prerequisite to instruct machine unambigously.
> 
> Xiaoshu
> 
> 
> 
Received on Friday, 11 August 2006 19:50:24 GMT

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