Sunday, July 02, 2006
The metaphor between gene, cell and social expression à 
On Formal verses Natural systems à 
Generative Methodology Glass Bead Games
I am having trouble with interspersing, as there is no easy way to make a response ... (this is a long debated issue in e-forums.)
However, our emerging discussion is a valuable one, perhaps; and might lead to several forums focusing on the larger picture.
John and I know each other's positions and history and so I know how to interpret what he is saying and where his ideas might go if the group was to explore freely a little bit.
But, Thomas; you and I are just talking for the first time.
Others also would like to make a principled contribution and I do hope that they will not carry forward any text from the past but just write to the issues.
I believe that John's point is that we have not really progressed much in terms of a foundational understanding that is commonly held over the past 30 years. That tagging should be integrated with formal constructions such as Web Ontology Language or Topic Maps.
He says this, even though his position on the poor choice of RDF is well known. I agree completely, and also see it necessary to state the obvious, and that is that OWL constructions are maturing and finding important roles within what is called the semantic web.
I feel that general systems theory points to the control over funding and advancement by short term interests. This control has a cumulative effect leading to the rejection of non-locality as an essential aspect of human communication and cognitive processes. This rejection is paradoxical in that there is high utility to get to low hanging fruit, but absolute incorrectness when trying to extend to what is unreachable goals (machines that understand each other).
The natural sciences have a hard time with this non-locality also, as we see in bioinformatics. But the core science has to admit to field effects and to non-locality as part of the real natural world.
Perhaps, Thomas, you could give a summary of your viewpoint in a way that folks from other parts of the information sciences might resonate with?