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[ontac-forum] faceted classification like UDEF?

To: "ONTAC-WG General Discussion" <ontac-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Arsic, Antoinette" <aarsic@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 11 Dec 2005 12:01:26 -0500
Message-id: <8D27E2CDAF11D34F97E7445BCCCDB92C7C3C7D@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

W/regard to the UDEF Object Class List, just a note:


Coming from the library and information science realm, this reminds me of the history of faceted classification.


Three best-known faceted universal classification systems: the Colon Classification and the second edition of the Bliss Bibliographic Classification (BC2).Ranganathan's Colon Classification has five facets, now classic (see Ranganathan (1962), among his many books, for an introduction to the facets and how to use them):
  • Personality (the something in question, e.g. a person or event in a classification of history, or an animal in a classification of zoology)
  • Matter (what something is made of)
  • Energy (how something changes, is processed, evolves)
  • Space (where something is)
  • Time (when it happens)
  • These five, known as PMEST, may be enough for you.
  •  If you need more, look to BC2 for ideas (Broughton 2001, 79):
  • thing/entity
  • kind
  • part
  • property
  • material
  • process
  • operation
  • patient
  • product
  • by-product
  • agent
  • space
  • time


From: http://www.miskatonic.org/library/facet-web-howto.html


“The smaller the domain, the more specific and detailed the facets can get. There is little or no need to deal with the complications inherent in organizing the world of knowledge, and the system can be as precise as necessary to do what is needed. Here follow some examples of smaller classifications, beginning with the Art & Architecture Thesaurus (Petersen 1994, 26), which is not actually a classification scheme, but is indeed faceted. Note how some of the classifications are based on Ranganathan's Personality, Matter, Energy, Space, and Time.”

  • Associated Concepts (e.g., philosophy)
  • Physical Attributes (density)
  • Styles and Periods (Simulationist) (similar to Space and Time)
  • Agents (People/Organizations) (lighthouse keepers)
  • Activities (thinking) (similar to Energy)
  • Materials (plywood) (similar to Matter)
  • Objects (bunk beds) (similar to Personality)
Antoinette Arsic
Sr. Information Systems Engineer
The MITRE Corporation
703-337-9016 (VOIP)
*703-983-5286 (new office number, was 883)
*443-567-2703 (new cell)

From: ontac-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ontac-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Gary Berg-Cross
Sent: Tuesday, December 06, 2005 4:04 PM
To: ontac-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Cc: ron.l.schuldt@xxxxxxxx
Subject: [ontac-forum] Universal Data Element Framework (UDEF) question

 I attended the Expedition Workshop on Advancing Information Sharing And Data Architecture today (12/06).


I had a question which there wasn’t time to pose, on the Universal Data Element Framework (UDEF) briefing by Ron Schuldt and so I thought I might post it to Ron as well as here.


See http://colab.cim3.net/file/work/Expedition_Workshop/2005-12-06_Advancing_Information_Sharing_And_Data_Architecture/UDEF-DNS-6Dec2005.ppt


These have probably been discussed by discussed by the UDEF folks and might persue it on the ontac forum if others have a position on it.


Essentially the question concerns issues with the UDEF “Semantics” which seems to be based on a fixed set of  17 Class categories that are decomposable into sub-classes. Taxonomies provide weak semantics but beyond this there seems to be a real problem with this partially fixed class structure. UDEF assigns a 3 part number (object class #, object/term # and property of term #).  The first part of the number is based on the object classification and therefore part of it is fixed by the 17 top level classes that UDEF proposes (listed below) and whatever sub-classes people come up with.


UDEF Object

Class List




















So if either the top level classes or how you sub-class thing change the “semantics” change and therefore the number would have to change. How does UDEF propose to handle this?


Looking at the classes I could see major issues off the top.  For example, I wonder why Document or Plant is not an Entity or where medical diagnosis might be in this hierarchy? 


So taken as a whole I see an issue with the semantics of the approach.  If UDEF is to be effective it seems to me that its approach to semantics will have to be richer.  The triplet might be a nice way to label an ontology, but now it just does a taxonomic portion and might have to be redesigned to provide labels for ontology "nodes"....






 Gary Berg-Cross



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