[sc34wg3] More comments on the Tau model

Robert Barta sc34wg3@isotopicmaps.org
Thu, 26 Aug 2004 10:18:46 +1000

On Tue, Jul 27, 2004 at 09:08:13AM +0200, Lars Marius Garshol wrote:
> Having had time to digest the Tau model better a couple of questions
> came to me yesterday.

Late response, I know, but I use this to bring myself back into TM
model thinking mode.

> Unless associations are members of /N/ (which I don't think they are)

Correct, assertions (not associations) are NOT elements (avoid to use
the word member for obvious reasons) of /N/...

> they cannot play parts in assertions in the Tau model, which means
> that reification is out.

...but, of course (!), reification is _in_. In fact, it is a "first
class concept".

1) "Reificiation" exists in only ONE meaning: Making an assertion
   a "thing to talk about".

2) Assume an assertion a = { <...>, <...>, ....<...> }. To reify it
   it only needs a member <id, "X1234567">.

   id (a) is then "X1234567".

   Nothing can stop me (or you) now to use "X1234567" as a player
   in another assertion a'.

3) Side note: Since things like 'love', 'war' and 'sc34wg3' are
   also assertions in \tau (I ignored any characteristics which may be

     { <id, "love0815"> }
     { <id, "war1234">  }
     { <id, "sc34wg3">  }

   they are also immediately "reifyable". Since we treat EVERYTHING as an
   assertion, there is only ONE notion of 'reification'.

> The other problem is that it doesn't appear that members are members
> of /N/ either, which means that members cannot be reified, either.

That's a feature, not a bug. I have no problem with others putting the
obscenity 'reifying members' into a model, but for me this is clearly
an abomination.

Why? Because as you yourself say...

> Further, even if they could simply putting <r, p> into the p position
> of some member would not carry the full identity of the member into
> that assertion, since which assertion the member belongs to would not
> be clear, and so this would mean that reifying members in this model
> is going to be very hard.

...exactly this. The fact that "a particular topic plays a particular
role" is completely worthless by itself. What is (sometimes)
interesting is to address "a particular topic playing a particular
role in an assertion". But that is equivalent to addressing the
assertion itself. And that we have.

> That's one exercise I'd very much like to see the author perform. :)

Done :-)