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Re: [SKOS comment] Re: Call for Comments: SKOS Primer: W3C Working Draft 21 February 2008

From: Azamat <abdoul@cytanet.com.cy>
Date: Fri, 29 Feb 2008 00:04:41 +0200
Message-ID: <006501c87a55$eb24de90$010aa8c0@homepc>
To: "Antoine Isaac" <aisaac@few.vu.nl>
Cc: <public-swd-wg@w3.org>, <public-esw-thes@w3.org>

Dear Antoine,

Please don't misread my comments. I regard your project as an interesting 
initiative and wish you all successes. The substance of my message is 
simple, to build a large scale semantic system requires not just good but 
rather profound knowledge of semantics, its nature, assumptions, and rules.

After all, to know both good points and bad points is always a guarantee of 
a victory.

best wishes,

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Antoine Isaac" <aisaac@few.vu.nl>
To: "Azamat" <abdoul@cytanet.com.cy>
Cc: "SWD WG" <public-swd-wg@w3.org>; "SKOS" <public-esw-thes@w3.org>
Sent: Thursday, February 28, 2008 3:52 PM
Subject: [SKOS comment] Re: Call for Comments: SKOS Primer: W3C Working 
Draft 21 February 2008

> Dear Azamat,
>> I had this message several times. To ignore it might look impolite.
> So would be ignoring your answer. However, to optimize the chances it gets 
> a proper answer, I forward it to the two lists where people can react to 
> it.
> Please be aware that SKOS is mainly intended at practitioners in search of 
> a standard solution to express different kind of controlled vocabularies 
> in the Semantic Web. And practitioners are also involved in its design.
> It is therefore no surprise that some parallels are drawn and some 
> generalizations made, which do not fit the views of semanticists on the 
> subject (which are in any case, I think, too many to be seamlessly 
> reconciled, as your wikipedia quotations highlight it)
> Notice in this respect that the problem originates in the scope of SKOS 
> itself: the things that we aim at representing are very diverse: some 
> classification schemes use "codes" and refer to "classes", thesauri have 
> "terms" and so on.
> Yet, it happens, looking at the way these things are used now and will be 
> in the near future (with more and more links established between them), 
> that (i) some standardisation has to take place, and that (ii) this 
> standardisation can be actually grounded on some observed practical 
> similarities (http://www.w3.org/TR/skos-ucr/)
> Our aim is not to replace the original objects in their initial context of 
> use, but to allow to port them to a shared space, based on a simplified 
> model, enabling wider re-use and better interoperability.
> This space is indeed new, and would call for new concepts (constructs?) 
> and names: but how to grasp something like a 
> "concept-or-term-or-keyword-or-class-or-tag-or-heading"?
> This of course shall not allow us to make too broad assumptions or too 
> loose wordings, and your mail may prove useful in this respect. But I 
> don't expect that the gain with respect to application interoperability 
> can be achieved without paying some sort of price with respect to 
> theoretical purity.
> Best regards
> Antoine
>> Some brief comments on two basic assumptions.
>> I.  ''SKOS  Simple Knowledge Organisation System  provides a model for 
>> expressing the basic structure and content of concept schemes such as 
>> thesauri, classification schemes, subject heading lists, taxonomies, 
>> folksonomies, and other types of controlled vocabulary.''
>> Here is a confusion of different entities: constructs and words (terms). 
>> Besides, it is the domain of global ontology to cover all sorts of 
>> controlled vocabulary. No need to invent the SKOS.
>> II. ''The fundamental element of the SKOS vocabulary is the concept. 
>> Concepts denote ideas or meanings that are the units of thought 
>> [Willpower Glossary] which underly the KOSs used in a number of 
>> applications [SKOS-UCR]. As such, concepts exist in the mind as abstract 
>> entities which are independent of the terms used to label them.''
>> Here is a bad misunderstanding of the nature of semantics and its basic 
>> notions; namely:
>> 1. Vocabulary is a listing of words or the system of symbols and 
>> techniques, and hardly it is a conceptual system.
>> 2. No ''concepts denote ideas or meanings''. There is general semantic 
>> rule: some symbols (signs) designate, while all constructs mean something 
>> in the world. Then, symbols (or signs) designate constructs (ideas, 
>> concepts, propositions, or theories), whereas the constructs mean real 
>> things. So the ideas are expressed by words, which signify the real 
>> entities to be named. Thus the meanings of ideas are signified by words, 
>> not by concepts. We say significance of the symbol and the meaning of the 
>> construct, what might be equivalent.
>> 3. There are words (signs, symbols, terms, codes) which signify only 
>> things in the world or only the ideas in the mind or both ideas and 
>> things.
>> 4. Concept is the unit construct, and the construct covers concept 
>> (individual, class, relation), proposition, context, and theory.
>> Summing up:
>> If somebody is striving for semantic web, he must have a good learning 
>> about the nature of meaning 
>> (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meaning_%28linguistic%29 ) and the modes of 
>> signification ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sign)determined by the kinds 
>> of things signified and the kinds of things which signify (signs, 
>> symbols, codes, terms, words).
>> azamat abdoullaev
>> more on semantics see
>> http://www.igi-pub.com/books/details.asp?id=7641
>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Antoine Isaac" <aisaac@few.vu.nl>
>> To: <semantic-web@w3.org>
>> Sent: Wednesday, February 27, 2008 12:02 AM
>> Subject: Call for Comments: SKOS Primer: W3C Working Draft 21 February 
>> 2008
Received on Thursday, 28 February 2008 22:05:00 UTC

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