W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-rdf-logic@w3.org > November 2001

Re: The meaning of a document

From: Jeen Broekstra <jbroeks@cs.vu.nl>
Date: Mon, 19 Nov 2001 09:36:19 +0100 (CET)
To: Seth Russell <seth@robustai.net>
cc: Aaron Swartz <me@aaronsw.com>, aaron Swartz <aswartz@upclink.com>, RDF-LOGIC <www-rdf-logic@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.GSO.4.40.0111190917500.19684-100000@flits.cs.vu.nl>
On Sun, 18 Nov 2001, Seth Russell wrote:

> Ok, I'd like read into the record here the second item too:
> 2. The meaning of an RDF statement is defined by the
>   preciate used, and so is specified by the specification
>   of the Property that is used as predicate.
> Hmmm .... if we take both (1) and (2) together it seems that we could
> conclude that:
>  The logical meaning of an RDF domument is the
>  conjunction of  the statements in the document
>  and the statements in all the schema documents
>  referred to by the Property terms in that document
>  and all the statements in other documents
>  referred  to by those schema documents.
> In other words {:ChocolateLover dmal:complementOf  :NotCholateLover} is
> meaningless unless we AND it to:
> <rdf:Property rdf:ID="complementOf">
>   <rdfs:label>complementOf</rdfs:label>
>   <rdfs:comment>
>     for complementOf(X, Y) read: X is the complement of Y; if something is
> in Y,
>     then it's not in X, and vice versa.
>     cf OIL NOT
>   </rdfs:comment>
>   <rdfs:domain rdf:resource="#Class"/>
>   <rdfs:range rdf:resource="#Class"/>
> </rdf:Property>
> and then also code the rdfs:comment in some kind of a RDF
> document too.  Or are we to assume that our programs can
> respond to the meaning of English sentences?

I think you are overlooking the fact that these programs are
typically "native speakers" of DAML+OIL. We don't have to
tell them what complementOf means, they already know. These
are the language primitives, and they are called primitive
for this very reason.

For the program, the "meaning" is in the logic, and every
DAML+OIL primitive corresponds to a logical formula. The
English sentence you are referring to is merely a comment,
put there to make it more human-understandable as well
(humans are notoriously bad at logic).

Jeen Broekstra                             Vrije Universiteit
jbroeks@cs.vu.nl          Dep. Mathematics & Computer Science
           de Boelelaan 1081a, 1081 HV Amsterdam, Netherlands
Received on Monday, 19 November 2001 03:37:01 UTC

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