Building the semantic web (was: MIME-RPC (was Re: REST))

Jeff Bone
Sat, 19 Jan 2002 16:21:56 -0600

Russell Turpin wrote:

> I think you're wrong, though, when you say that
> ontologies are emphemeral. Once created, they tend
> to stick around. As do categories.

That's true but it doesn't invalidate my point.  As your "fish" example
illustrates they decay in accuracy / applicability over time.  That's what I
mean by ephemeral;  you're right that they don't go away as quickly as they
need to, rather they become less and less useful as time goes on and people's
models of reality or various application domains change.  Ontologies themselves
are ephemeral in the long haul, but their value is sometimes (often) ephemeral
on a scale of years.  (To prove this to yourself:  when was the last time you
re-org'd your bookmarks, relative to the last time you couldn't find something
in them?)

Phlogiston, anyone?