Saturday, February 03, 2007

KR as a Set of Ontological Committments

In the previous article we discussed about KR As a Surrogate. In this part we are concentrating on how Knowledge Representation affects the Ontology.

When we choose a representation; we often remove few aspects of the object and choose only those which makes sense in the current context or which is relevant to the situation and seems to represent the object itself. Which in a sense is like making the Ontological Commitment. These commitments are essence of the whole representation mechanism.

While the basic intention for all reasoning machines remains the same as to reason the objects (entities) from the real-world. But we know for the fact that the real-world is complex and not organized as our machines are. So in order for the reasoning mechanism to decide what we (and the reasoning machine) needs from the real-world object and what can be ignored.

At what Stage the Commitment begin?
The ontological commitment is unavoidable and it is present in almost all form of reasoning be it logic, rules, view points or any other things in this world which supports reasoning. The only difference here is each of these present their own view of what they think is important and which requires our attention. But then again as we discussed in previous post, every representation ignores some facts and makes some assumptions. So the best we can do is to have a best or most accurate guess to start with. No matter what we do we end up making a commitment (even a small amount) to the bigger ontology here.

Multiple layers of commitments
The moment we start representing the knowledge a set of commitments are made. As we move on additional layers of commitments are added on top. We start KP with the best guess (not accurate) about how we see the world. As frames suggest prototypes and taxonomies but do not tell us which things to select as prototypes rules suggest thinking in terms of plausible inferences but dont tell us which plausible inferences to attend to Similarly logic tells us to view the world in terms of individuals and relations but does not specify which individuals and relations to use.

Commitment to a particular view thus begins the moment we make our choice to how we see the world and additional layer of details are added as we move along.

Until Next Time...:)