[sc34wg3] Knowledge Representation
Sat, 15 Jan 2005 08:39:08 -0500
Have been doing a lot of reading as a background for the next draft of
the TMRM and I ran across "What is Knowledge Representation?" by Randall
Davis, Howard Schrobe and Peter Szolovits (1993),
Of particular interest are the five principles they list for a knowledge
A knowledge representation (KR) is most fundamentally a surrogate, a
substitute for the thing itself, use to enable an entity to determine
consequences by thinking rather than acting, i.e., by reasoning about
the world rather than taking action in it.
It is a set of ontological commitments, i.e., an answer to the question:
Is what terms should I think about the world?
It is a fragmentary theory of intelligent reasoning, expressed in terms
of three components: (i) the reprensentation's fundamental conception of
intelligent reasoning; (ii) the set of inferences the representation
sanctions; and (iii) the set of inferences that it recommends.
It is a medium for pragmatically efficient computation, i.e., the
computational environment in which thinking is accomplished. One
contribution to this pragmatic efficiency is supplied by the guidance a
representation provides for organizing information so as to facilitate
making the recommended inferences.
It is a medium of human expression, i.e., a language in which we say
things about the world.
(page 1, note emphasis in the original omitted)
The article is quite readable and touches on a number of important points.
(If the list looks familiar, you may be thinking of Sowa's reference to
this list in his "Knowledge Representation" book at page 134. Sowa
restates the principles and then provides his own gloss on them. I
rather like the original statement myself.)
Hope everyone is having a great day!
Director of Research and Development
Society of Biblical Literature
Chair, V1 - Text Processing: Office and Publishing Systems Interface
Co-Editor, ISO 13250, Topic Maps -- Reference Model
Topic Maps: Human, not artificial, intelligence at work!