Supporting the revolution in business models founded on new technology infrastructures.

The Big Red Box On Wheels -- "Ontologies-Of-The-Personal" Since FOIS '01

Almost 10 years ago, your host attended FOIS '01, in Ogunquit, Maine.  Having been introduced to the world of software ontologies in conversation with Prof. Graeme Hirst of the University of Toronto, your host developed a serious interest in the world of ontologies, on both a personal and a business level. 

His specific interest in ontologies is modelling of the work activities of the "autonomous human actor".  A short essay on this interest can be found here: Your host's overall interest in ontological engineering is mainly from business and journalistic perspectives, a natural inclination given his IT career which started in IT market research, then progressing to enterprise software sales.

Over the course of 10 years it is possible to observe that as a subject of serious ontological engineering research, the autonomous human actor has gone from "invisible" in the years 2000 and 2001 to "slightly more visible" now, in 2010.  It's an interesting phenomenon how "the human" is, in most software schemes, what can only be described as "the least privileged subject".  It is true that If one removes "autonomous" from the formula "autonomous human actor", the "human actor" at least is privileged, but in your host's view, generally only as a captive agent of the organization. . . . read more

FOIS '10 -- Ontological Diversity, Not A Tower Of Babel

A celebration of diversity is not what one would expect from what a colleague characterized as the "dry world of ontology".  Yet this was the topic of several presenters at today's morning sessions at FOIS 2010.  Especially, at this morning's "Invited Talk", by John Bateman, Professor of Applied Linguistics at the University of Bremen, the topic of ontological diversity was presented as both requirement and artifact for successful ontological engineering. . . . read more

FOIS '10 -- Workshop On Ontology Education -- Demand & Supply

Yesterday's FOIS 2010 Workshop participants enjoyed scheduled morning presentations by Antony Galton, Fabian Neuhaus, Barry Smith and Michael Grüninger. This blog item is a report of those proceedings, along with a few editorial comments. A companion blog item will offer some analysis of the intersection of ontological engineering and practical opportunity, from the perspective of sociology and business.

Ontological engineering may be reaching a tipping point in capability and acceptance, and if that tipping point is reached, the construction of dramatically more powerful and effective software would be expected in the foreseeable future (although how steep the post-inflection-point curve is, remains to be seen.) But this ideal vision will only be reached if the market for ontology sciences, services and products takes off. . . . read more

FOIS '10 -- First Day Of 6th Int'l Conference On Formal Ontologies In Information Systems

Almost 10 years ago, the idea of ontologies as applied to information systems was still in its infancy.  Your host attended FOIS 2001, only the second-ever FOIS conference, and was nevertheless intrigued by the possibilities -- not only from a research and engineering perspective, but also from that of business and evangelization.  

Now in 2010, your host's role as sales manager for an open source BPM platform provider gives him opportunities to see how the application of productized ontological science can make an impact in addressing some of the vexing challenges of today's organizations.  . . . read more

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