W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-rdf-interest@w3.org > September 2004

Re: web proper names

From: Thomas B. Passin <tpassin@comcast.net>
Date: Mon, 20 Sep 2004 17:59:26 -0400
Message-ID: <414F52BE.7010307@comcast.net>
To: www-rdf-interest@w3.org

Harry Halpin wrote:

> The very idea of a "referent" or a "thing"
> is a bit problematic - while I agree an RDF predicate denoting that would
> be good, we're going to go right up against one of the largest problems
> with all knowledge representation systems, SW included - how to know
> if what I mean by my "thing" is the same as what you mean? 

No matter what, this problem - what does an identifier identify, and is 
it the same as that identified by another identifier - is always going 
to be with us, because it has no general solution.  The best we can hope 
for is to have some techniques available that help in some number of 
practical cases.

In some cases, we can use owl to say that two individuals or two 
properties are the same (if we happen to know that).  In some cases, 
inverseFunctional properties will allow a processor to know.  In other 
cases, we may have to go with probability, when enough 
nonInverseFunctional properties exist (if my wife, address, height, hair 
color, apparent age, etc., etc., meet the description, then I have 
probably been identified).

Maybe with Web Proper Names, we can get some more help by means of 
parsing the URI (or whatever representation).  It seems to me to be 
basically a vehicle for packaging up a number of non-inverseFunctional 
properties in a compact way, judging by the few minutes I have been able 
to spend looking at the paper so far.  That could be useful, I would think.


Tom P

Thomas B. Passin
Explorer's Guide to the Semantic Web (Manning Books)
Received on Monday, 20 September 2004 21:56:28 UTC

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