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Re: Some DAML clarification

From: Drew McDermott <drew.mcdermott@yale.edu>
Date: Fri, 5 Apr 2002 17:47:54 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <200204052247.g35Mlse15738@pantheon-po01.its.yale.edu>
To: abcharl@maltanet.net
CC: drew.mcdermott@yale.edu, www-rdf-logic@w3.org

   [Charlie Abela]
      A question that has been haunting me these days is how, if
   possible, to match within an ontology, the premise and its
   conclusion. Inferencing must play a role here, but still there has
   to be some declared form of connection between the two.

   [me]
   I don't understand this part
   of your e-mail.  Can you
   elaborate?

   [Charlie]
   I mean the following;

   Every rule will have a means of declaring its premises and
   conclusion, as in the example listed earlier.  Now assuming that
   some form of reasoner is going to be used.  And given a premise (
   such as one containing a triple) the reasoner must match with a
   premise/ or premises in a particular rule and infer its
   conclusion. How will this inference come about?  I am not sure how
   this process should be handled. Should there be some property in a
   basic rules ontology that connects a premise to a particular
   conclusion ? Sort of

   If
     Premise A
   Then
    Conclusion B

   And in the basic ontology there would be defined in some way that:
   Premise leadsTo Conclusion So inference engine upon given Premise A
   will try to find a rule that matches this Premise and the infer its
   Conclusion

   Hope I am not making a mess out of this and have explained more the
   issue

It sounds like you have fallen prey to the "Achilles and Tortoise"
fallacy described by Lewis Carroll.  Perhaps someone can post a
pointer to an online copy of it, you can read it, and Enlightenment
will settle over you.

The fallacy is to suppose that because a rule says "From P conclude
Q," there must be another rule somewhere that says "If a rule says
'From P conclude Q', and you have concluded P, then you must conclude
Q."  An infinite regress suddenly yawns before us.

The most remarkable example of the fallacy I ever came across was in
an otherwise good book about programmed cell death and other
biological wonders, where the author made the suggestion that
somewhere deep inside DNA there is a message saying "Reproduce!"

                                             -- Drew McDermott
Received on Friday, 5 April 2002 17:48:08 GMT

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