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Re: MT for imports

From: Jim Hendler <hendler@cs.umd.edu>
Date: Thu, 14 Nov 2002 11:07:19 -0500
Message-Id: <p05111735b9f979185938@[]>
To: Dlmcg1@aol.com, pfps@research.bell-labs.com, massimo@w3.org
Cc: www-webont-wg@w3.org
Please note that we will be discussing this issue on today's phone 
call based on my earlier mail entitled " Proposal to close issue 5.6 
- owl:imports" [1] -- if (as I think is the case) there are those in 
the WG who want an MT-based solution, there needs to be some specific 
closing words put on the table at some point before we could vote on 
it.  An action was taken for such to be available by today, but 
instead we seem to be in a long and non-converging email discussion 
(I count over 50 messages in various related threads).  I'd love to 
see something done today that would let us begin to move this issue 
to conclusion -- we still have several other open issues we need to 
close if we are to move to Last Call in the near future, and cannot 
spend months arriving at consensus on this
p.s. This message is written with my chair hat on - I am trying to 
force the issue to closure.

[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-webont-wg/2002Nov/0184.html

At 10:51 AM -0500 11/14/02, Dlmcg1@aol.com wrote:
>In a message dated 11/14/2002 8:48:37 AM Eastern Standard Time, 
>pfps@research.bell-labs.com writes:
>>From: "Massimo Marchiori" <massimo@w3.org>
>>Subject: RE: MT for imports (was: Re: Imports Proposal)
>>Date: Thu, 14 Nov 2002 02:14:15 +0100
>>>>I remain entirely baffled by all of this.
>>>>As Jerome Euzenat wrote:
>>>>>The timed web structure applies to ontologies exactly like it applies to
>>>>>hyperlinks in html, xsl:include and xsl:imports in XSLT, etc.
>>>>Of course, some advanced version of imports would depend on the "timed web
>>>>structure" (Massimo), but I cannot see how that should stop us 
>>>>from providing
>>>>something simple.
>>>>Lots and lots of computer languages provide import-like things, varying
>>>>from C to Scheme, and from LaTeX to XML. None of these have any of the
>>>>problems raised in the preceding discussion. Pat's example of someone
>>>>changing an imported file is common to all of these, happily ignored by
>>>>all of them, and rightly so, since it doesn't seem to break any of
>>>>them, the meaning and pragmatics of these import constructions is
>>>>entirely clear for all of them. If it works for XML, why wouldn't it
>>>>work for OWL?
>>>>I can simply not imagine standing up in front of a crowd, proudly
>>>>explaining OWL, and having to admit that,... eh... no,
>>>>well... actually, in OWL you cannot import other people's ontologies...
>>>Frank, I entirely agree. Note what you say is (I think) perfectly
>>>compatible with
>>>http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-webont-wg/2002Nov/0164.html , and
>>>what others (including, implicitly, Jerome in his last
>>>post) have been advocating as well: the operational import.
>>I am now totally confused.  Frank seems to be arguing that any reading of
>>owl:imports, declarative or opertational, does not suffer from timing
>I thought frank's main point was that it will be embarrassing to 
>many of us when introducing OWL if we have a language that does not 
>support even a very simple notion of imports. 
>I support this notion as well.
>There is an implicit dependancy on the state of the file system,
>>i.e., the WWW, but so what?
>>>rdfs:seeAlso is already there, and could profitably serve
>>>our needs. It's when these "pragmatic", as you say, needs are escalated to
>>>touch the logical structure (entailment), that we start
>>>to have problems; and we'd better postpone those problems to v2, as they
>>>would in all likelihood required a timed RDF datamodel, and
>>>even more cycles lost. Users don't need this for the moment, they just
>>>need, pragmatically, something that lets them import files.
>>Huh?  How is using owl:imports to add the meaning of another document to
>>the current one any different from using rdfs:seeAlso to ... add the
>>meaning of another document to the current one?

Professor James Hendler				  hendler@cs.umd.edu
Director, Semantic Web and Agent Technologies	  301-405-2696
Maryland Information and Network Dynamics Lab.	  301-405-6707 (Fax)
Univ of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742	  240-731-3822 (Cell)
Received on Thursday, 14 November 2002 11:07:37 UTC

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