CCAT: EMOTIONS (Fritz Lehmann)
Date: Wed, 23 Nov 94 03:33:23 CST
From: (Fritz Lehmann)
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     For practical ontology and modelling, it seems to
me that among all the multitudes of ways of modelling 
human emotions there are two ways which would have the
most immediate value.  The first would be a "minimal
set of feelings" which would be common to human beings,
animals, bugs and maybe even robots.  This set would
be small and and would be supplied with very reliable
inferences -- on the order of "If creature A desires
thing B, it will tend (aside from other considerations)
to seek B."  Such low-level notions of "desire" and
"aversion" might be the province of the CCAT subgroup
QUASIRATIONAL AGENTS as much as the subgroup EMOTIONS.

     The second level of practical EMOTION ontology
would be used to make sense of stories of human events.
My preference would be for a _conservative_ ontology,
that is, one with which few people would argue.  The
facts which would be inferred from a creature having
a certain emotion would be uncontroversial.  More
ambitious and controversial systems of emotions would
be deferred until later.

     Pat Hayes suggested that we consider whether
emotions form a "vector space"; by this I assume he
means that each species of emotion is an independent
"dimension" which takes on a range of (numerical)
values.   Although this sort of thing is popular
in interactive adventure games, or games like 
"Careers", I would not want to adopt that as the
central ontology-schema for emotions.  For one thing,
I don't think the "dimensions" (anger, love, fear, etc.)
are independent, nor necessarily linearly structured.
And, as Pat and Kate Sanders agreed, it's not clear how
many such dimensions there would be.

     Kate Sanders and Jorn Barger have pointed out
Andrew Ortony's system of emotions as a potential 
source for an emotions ontology.  I think any system
that is developed should mesh well with the other
ontologies which relate to emotions, such as HUMAN
and MEDICINE.  For HUMAN ACTIVITIES consider the
work of Gian Piero Zarri on RESEDA, and ontologies
built by Roger Schank's followers in the late 1970's and
early 1980's.  Also, Hobbes, Descartes and Spinoza
(and doubtless many others) used to publish works
with elaborate categorizations of "the passions";
the systems of these three have been modelled in
a semantic network in Doug Skuce's CODE4 system.

                        Yours truly,   Fritz Lehmann
GRANDAI Software, 4282 Sandburg Way, Irvine, CA 92715, U.S.A.
Tel:(714)-733-0566  Fax:(714)-733-0506