Re: [unrev-II] Re: Towards an atomic data structure (Somuthinghappenedon the way to the forum)

From: Eric Armstrong (
Date: Wed May 03 2000 - 16:28:06 PDT

  • Next message: Lee Iverson: "Re: [unrev-II] Thoughts"

    Henry van Eyken wrote:
    > Please accept my apologies if I sometimes go off the beam.
    Thanks. If I understood more of what you were saying, I might
    have known if I was being insulted...

    Seriously, when you and Jack got off on your thing, I was so
    far out of my depth that I splashing about looking for a life

    It occurs to me that there is a serious ambiguity inherent in
    the term "knowledge base". When I hear it applied to other
    projects, it is mostly a "marketing buzzword" that means
    "glorified database with some features like evaluations or
    categories or some such thing".

    But it also has a deeper meaning based in AI, carrying concepts
    like deep semantic modeling and machine reasoning. In this
    mailing list we are carrying on discussions of both kinds, using
    the same term at times.

    As a theoretical pursuit, I am glad to see AI-centric investigations
    continuing. And this is a reasonable forum for those discussions.
    But there are a lot of problems we don't know how to define in that
    arena, much less solve. So I am focused on what we can build today
    that will help us carry on those conversations.

    To try to achieve a better "separation of concerns", I am going to
    try to avoid use of the term "knowledge" in this forum. I use it
    only as a markety buzzword, to distinguish this effort from data
    base systems and the like. But it tends to flood me with issues I'm
    not prepared to deal with at the moment.

    Now, in general, I'm a fan of designing large, general systems
    before narrowing down the scope to something achievable. But just
    as we need to draw a line between what is achievable and what isn't
    at this point in time, I think it makes sense to make a distinction
    between what we are capable of designing (given finite resources)
    and what lies outside our scope.

    I know that an AI-style "knowledge" repository is outside my
    present scope.

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