Re: Determinates and determinables - summary

Fritz Lehmann <>
Date: Wed, 31 Aug 1994 13:52:33 -0700
From: Fritz Lehmann <>
Message-id: <>
Newsgroups: sci.logic,sci.philosophy.meta,,
Subject: Re: Determinates and determinables - summary
References: <340553$>
Organization: University of California, Irvine
Precedence: bulk
     Two further references on "determinables" are:
Antti Hautamaki, "Points of View and Their
Logical Analysis", Acta Philosophica Fennica,
Vol. 41, Societas Philosophica Fennica, Helsinki,
1986; and

Eileen Way, "Knowledge Representation and Methaphor",
Kluwer, Dordecht, 1991.

    Also, a "facet" in faceted library classification,
such as Ranganathan's COLON system used in some libraries
in India, is very like a determinable.  Similar "ontological
factors of the type hierarchy" may be found in the "base 
domains" (lattices from which graph labels are taken) in
"Inferential Semantics" by A. F. Parker-Rhodes, Humanities/Harvester
Press, Atlantic highlands, NJ/Hassox, Sussex, 1978, and in my
paper "Combining Ontological Hierarchies, As Anticipated by
Parker-Rhodes" in Proceedings of ANPA-West-1994, "Mind-Body
Problem and the Quantum", Alternative Natural Philosophy Association
West, 409 Leland Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94306.  A restricted kind
of (lattice-structured) determinable may be discerned in the
"conceptual scales" of Bernhard Ganter and Rudolf Wille's
"Conceptual Scaling" in "Applications of Graph Theory to the
Biological and Social Sceinces", Fred Roberts, Ed., Springer,
New York, 1989.  Another notion that amounts to structured determin-
ables is the set of specialized hierarchies in the semantic network
studies of Lenhart Schubert's school; see "The ECO Family" by
Nick Cercone, Randy Goebel, John de Haan and Stephanie Schaeffer, in
"Semantic Networks in Artificial Intelligence", F. Lehmann, Ed.,
Pergamon Press, Oxford, 1992, or in Computers and Mathematics 
with Applications, v.23, no.s 2-9, 1992.  See also the work on 
typing of CYC's slots by Larry Stephens and his students.

     In these studies it becomes clear that the existence of
determinables (a priori synthetic ontological dimensions, I 
claim) imposes severe structural constraints on the abstract
algebra of all possible descriptions ordered by subsumption.
A determinable is in effect a second-order predicate describing
the members of a structured set of first-order predicates (the
determinates).  When a set of predicates are really determinates
of a determinable, then the determinable can be "factored out"
of the poset of all descriptions, thereby simplifying the latter.
This is "divide and conquer" for knowledge representation.

                          Yours truly,   Fritz Lehmann
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