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Re: PROV-ISSUE-34: Section 4: definition of "Agent"

From: Paul Groth <p.t.groth@vu.nl>
Date: Sat, 23 Jul 2011 16:36:14 +0200
Message-ID: <4E2ADC5E.50209@vu.nl>
To: "khalidb@cs.man.ac.uk" <khalidb@cs.man.ac.uk>
CC: "public-prov-wg@w3.org" <public-prov-wg@w3.org>
Hi Khalid,

I think the definition of agents as a BOB is fine. The definition 
doesn't prevent you from having things that change about an agent 
outside the things that you defined as fixed.

So for alice:

If the attributes that characterized Alice, were her first name, last 
name, and facebook url then changing her profession wouldn't matter.

If the core attributes change about how we identify alice I think it's 
fair enough to require that those changes be reflected in provenance.

It's almost as if you were changing who you believed was controlling the 
process and indeed if a core attribute of the person changes this is 
important information to know.

Does that make sense?


> According to the definition in the Provenance Model initial draft "An
> agent represents a characterized entity capable of activity".
> My interpretation of this definition is that "an agent is a BOB". If
> that is the case, then one of the consequences is that we may need to
> associate a given process execution with multiple Agents that refer
> to the same human (system). To illustrate this, consider a long
> running process execution that is controlled by Alice, and consider
> that one of the attribute characterizing Alice, e.g., grade,
> changed, e.g., she was promoted, in that case, we will need to create
> a new BOB (that characterizes Alice) and associate it with the
> running process execution. Are we happy with this?
> Khalid

Received on Saturday, 23 July 2011 14:36:45 UTC

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