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Re: Meaning

From: Dr. Wex <wex@media.mit.edu>
Date: Fri, 23 May 2003 19:11:48 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <200305232311.TAA13929@ml.media.mit.edu>
To: www-ws@w3.org

Responding again to Drew's posting:
> I don't really see how the Cyc contexts you mentioned will help.

I'm not a Cyc expert, but my understanding is that Cyc replaces the notion
of universal and existential relationships/truth with the notion of a
scope (called a context) within which things are asserted and reasoned
about.  By using contexts you explicitly bring in notions such as "under
normal circumstances."

So if you sell me something I assume I own it and in my head I carry
around this notion that is, roughly "in the context of a normal sales
transaction."  That context doesn't include things like fraud or mistakes
on your part, such as selling me something you don't actually own.

I don't see how to model this kind of thing with a DAML-class language.
Nor do I see how to do Bayesian-style things, but that's another topic :)

> I don't see why the system must have no knowledge whatsoever about fraud
> and deceit, even granted it can't know everything.

The original discussion was how an agent on the Semantic Web would
establish ownership of something.  This was stated to be done by a process
of reasoning and set of action steps.  So-called "common sense"
considerations were not part of that process, nor can I see how to build
them in with the tools we have today.  So I made the (admittedly gross
over)simplification that the system would have no such knowledge.

> I think you're a tad too pessimistic.

Probably.  As I said, I have an emotional and intellectual desire to see
the Semantic Web come into being.  I just don't see how to make it happen,
particularly with the tools that are currently being developed.

> The issue is not whether we can build a perfect system, only whether we
> can build a cost-effective system.

True.  But to estimate the cost for such a thing would require having
nontrivial additional technologies and socio-legal structures in place.
If the Semantic Web depends on the existence of such things, where are
they going to come from?  If it does not, who will use it without them?

Received on Friday, 23 May 2003 19:11:49 UTC

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