Re: Doug Lenat's THE BIG PICTURE (Eduard Hovy)
Date: Tue, 6 Jun 1995 15:04:31 -0700
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To:, Doug Lenat <>
From: (Eduard Hovy)
Subject: Re: Doug Lenat's THE BIG PICTURE 
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I don't often agree with Doug (I don't for example buy his reason 
for why Cyc people don't/shouldn't participate in Ontology/KR efforts) 
but I certainly agree with his last paragraph!  

>In certain specific cases of problem solving, having a good repr. can
>make a big difference (cf. Saul Amarel's classic work on the
>Missionaries and Cannibals problem); but most of the time we as human
>beings share knowledge using much less specialized reprs. such as
>english.  Believe me, FOL -- with a few second-order extensions -- is
>adequate.  CycL is adequate.  By now KIF is surely fine, too.  So my
>advice to all of you is: stop tinkering with KIF, start sharing your
>ontologies, and you will get hit in the face with what's really
>important, namely sharing most but not all of the meaning of most but
>not all of the terms most but not all of the time.  To those of you
>who've already gone far along that path, I apologize for being so
>patronizing, but for the rest of you:  get over your physics envy,
>or philosophy envy, or whatever, and get down to the real work!
>--Doug Lenat

The main problem is not what the rep. language looks like, it's what's 
*in* it, and how you *get* it there... 


Eduard Hovy
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