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Ontological versus knowledge engineering

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1 Author(s)
D. B. Lenat ; MCC, Austin, TX, USA

The author first discusses the difference between a knowledge base (KB) and a database (DB), which seems to hinge on the `gray box' verses `black box' nature of the entries. He then discusses the need for a huge KB to break today's bottleneck in intelligent systems, i.e. their brittleness when confronted by unforeseen problems. That same brittleness-the representation trap-is what prevents multiple expert systems from cooperating or even sharing rules. The author then considers the central question of the present work: How is the task of building a huge KB different from that of building n small KBs? It is shown that this leads into the realm of ontological engineering, and it is found that there is no single, elegant `use-neutral' solution to the problem, at least not at present, but that a kind of variegated `tool-box' approach might succeed

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering  (Volume:1 ,  Issue: 1 )