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RE: LANG: first sketch

From: Ian Horrocks <horrocks@cs.man.ac.uk>
Date: Thu, 7 Mar 2002 22:21:51 +0000
Message-ID: <15495.59391.776621.545108@oaklands.demon.co.uk>
To: "Smith, Michael K" <michael.smith@eds.com>
Cc: Frank van Harmelen <Frank.van.Harmelen@cs.vu.nl>, www-webont-wg@w3.org
On March 7, Smith, Michael K writes:
> Ian and Frank,
> 
> Great document.
> 
> Two comments.
> 
> 1. Negation and disjunction considered hard?

Of course such things are open to debate. They are not there in
standard frames.

> 
> I would place these in the class "easy to understand by our target
> group".  Is your categorization due to complexity for tool
> builders/reasoners?
> 
> 2. Syntax (nag, nag, nag)

I don't agree (even if in practice we will need to specify the
semantics sooner rather than later). The standard for academic papers
on logics and logical languages is to use some sort of "abstract"
syntax (c.f. the DL "German" syntax). Specifying a "practical"
serialisation comes later if and when someone decides to implement.

So the idea is that we specify the language using some sort of
"abstract" (and hopefully more compact) syntax, then define mappings
from that into various "serialisations" (RDF, XML etc.).

Ian

> 
> Determining the semantic components of OWL should be our priority,
> no question.
> 
> The only thing I take exception to here is "we expect that
> a single syntax won't do".  I don't know quite what that means.  In
> one sense, I agree whole-heartedly, let a thousand flowers bloom.
> 
> That said, we are defining a language.  There must be a rigorous
> statement of what the sentences of that language are.  These are the
> strings for which our semantics will provide a meaning.
> 
> One syntax description will be primary.  Nothing prevents anyone from
> providing what they think are better human or machine engineered
> syntax on top of this.  In particular, the WG can specify a
> translation from the definitional syntax to an alternative we deem
> critical.
> 
> - Mike
> 
> Michael K. Smith
> EDS Austin Innovation Centre
> 98 San Jacinto, #500
> Austin, TX 78701
> 512 404-6683
> 
> 
> 
Received on Thursday, 7 March 2002 17:23:17 GMT

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