[sc34wg3] New SAM draft

Steve Pepper sc34wg3@isotopicmaps.org
Fri, 21 Feb 2003 10:28:14 +0100

At 08:44 21.02.2003 +0000, Martin Bryan wrote:
> >| 3.4 4th para
> >| "Every topic represents one, and only one, subject" is incorrect.
> >| Suppose I create a supertype node that brings together the subjects
> >| of "astronomy" and "quantum theory". There is no known name for this
> >| subject so I create a new topic and name it Astronomy & Quantum
> >| Theory". Is this topic really about only one subject? (I know what
> >| you are trying to get at, but the wording is inaccurate!)
> >I've tried to fix this in the latest draft:
>   <URL: http://www.isotopicmaps.org/sam/sam-model/#d0e532 >
> >Do you think the new wording works better?
>I still have problems with the "one, and only one," bit. If you said "a
>single" I would have no problem, its the "and only one" that kills the
>ability to have subjects that combine other subjects as per my example.

The way I think about this is that by creating such a topic you have
implicitly "brought into being" a new subject which encompasses both
Astronomy and Quantum Physics. Thus the topic really does just represent
a single subject (which happens to be a composite). This is no different
than the subject "Steve's daughters" - which is also "one and only one"
subject (although it encompasses three other subjects).

On that basis, the current wording is acceptable. But if you think it
might be misunderstood, perhaps there should be a note saying that
a subject may be a composite subject?


Steve Pepper, Chief Executive Officer <pepper@ontopia.net>
Convenor, ISO/IEC JTC1/SC34/WG3  Editor, XTM (XML Topic Maps)
Ontopia AS, Waldemar Thranes gt. 98, N-0175 Oslo, Norway.
http://www.ontopia.net/ phone: +47-23233080 GSM: +47-90827246