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Re: Latest version of glossary

From: JOG <jog_at_cs.nott.ac.uk>
Date: 25 Feb 2006 09:58:59 -0800
Message-ID: <1140890339.779496.104380@v46g2000cwv.googlegroups.com>


dawn wrote:
> JOG wrote:
> > 2 things here struck me as important. First, Chen writes that entities
> > only exist 'in our minds',
>
> definitely a red flag phrase
>
> > and as such are arbitrary constructions - I
> > agree with him that this is an important part of any definition.
>
> You are an entity and I'm figuring you exist outside of my mind.

I don't think Chen is necessarily referring to an individual's mind, rather something that _we_ in general form a consensus on. I know in the end i'm just a load of sparkly sub-atomic particles waltzing about in a complex relationship, but for you to interact with them, and me not to go loony-tunes, it helps for us to give that relationship an identity of its own that we can hang our hat on. For this reason, although I'm a proponent of RM and view the information principle as attractive, I cannot rule out identities, and in turn composite datatypes, as potentially being of use. I'll stop there before I career off topic on king milindi's chariot as Marshall put it once ;)

>
> > Second, it appears that he ties the definition in very heavily in with
> > an "entity set". From this he seems to be defining an entity as: "An
> > element of an entity set". Good, clear and simple definition that ;)
>
> Perhaps we could define all nouns that way?
> person: an element of a person set

yes, initially that sounds a non sequitur approach, but sets offer a solid and established theoretical basis for formulating these things. An entity appears to be something with an identity and characteristic properties - this seems to match precisely with the purpose of a set's formal intension. I understand however this is going overboard from the perspective of a simple glossary but I find the correspondence interesting.

>
> > This would of course passes the buck to defining what an entity set is
> > - but I believe that's an easier task, especially with Chen's reference
> > to test predicates and common properties of elements of those sets.
> > Opinions?
>
> of course ;-)

all best, Jim. Received on Sat Feb 25 2006 - 11:58:59 CST

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