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Re: How semantic is semantic web?

From: Alejandro Cabral <alejandro.cabral@oracle.com>
Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2007 11:20:10 -0300
Message-ID: <45DB039A.2030304@oracle.com>
To: Chiara Carlino <chiaracarlino@epistematica.com>
CC: semantic-web@w3.org

             I have not read your explanation yet, though I promise I 
will. I agree with the "term" issue you mention. We may be calling 
something by a term that probably doesn´t fully describe it. Myself 
being interested in Semantics (not just Web Semantics), I understand 
your point though I must also say that the term "Semantic" in Semantic 
Web acquieres a new and different meaning when you finish reading the 
phrase. "Semantic Web" could refer to a form non-human meaning too. I 
mean: we are putting "knowledge" instead of meaning as you say but in an 
environment where meaning is nothing more than data, or metadata 
expressed in such a way that a computer program can understand it.  The 
ability to give this data a "human" meaning is what makes me think of it 
as Semantic web. It´s the first time we don´t just describe something, 
but also give the expression a certain ammount of indications that will 
provide a certain meaning when related to certain queries.

I do think epistemology needs to be considered though, I´m happy to see 
it mentioned on the list :)



Chiara Carlino wrote:

> I always find it quite hard to explain to people not directly 
> involved  with semantic web technologies what do we mean by ?semantic 
> web? and  in which sense it should be semantic. As I say ?semantic? 
> everybody  always thinks about language and text-retrieving mechanisms.
> Thinking about this and about what definitely ?semantic? means, I  
> realized that ontologies do not really deal with semantics, as they  
> give no reference to things in real world: they deal with knowledge.
> We all know that, as we build an ontology, we are explaining the  
> structure of our knowledge, we are not giving a real meaning (i.e. a  
> reference to things) to the terms we use, we are just explaining the  
> relationships between concepts.
> This is why I suggest to rename what we call semantic web using a new  
> term, related more to knowledge and less to meanings. The term I 
> found  is epistematics, because of the relation with knowledge 
> (epistéme) and  of the analogy with informatics: as informatics deals 
> with the  automatic processing of informations, epistematics could 
> point the  automatic processing of knowledge, as allowed by ontologies 
> and  automatic reasonment.
> I?d be glad to here your opinions about that;
> you can find a detailed explanation of my arguments in pdf format  
> here: http://dx.doi.org/10.1683/epistematics .
> Thanks,
> Chiara Carlino
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Received on Tuesday, 20 February 2007 17:41:02 UTC

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