[Crm-sig] Foundational perspectives of CRMbase and CRMsoc (was : Re: Modelling an Event's General Outcome Ideas? Properties?)

Francesco Beretta francesco.beretta at cnrs.fr
Sun Jan 9 16:33:34 EET 2022


Dear Martin,

thank you for taking of your time to discuss my statement below about 
the foundational perspectives of the CRM. Allow me please, in turn, to 
restate, with all due respect, the distinctions that we should introduce 
if we want to remove any misunderstanding. It would indeed be a pity to 
"confuse everything".

I must confess that it is almost impossible not to think that the level 
of factuality modelled by CRMbase is the one of the happenings in the 
physical world, and this from the point of view of the spatio-temporal 
relations of classical (Galilean or Newtonian) physics.

Of course the domain of discourse of the CRM is the one of cultural 
heritage and history but considered from the perspective of space-time 
relations of entities, i.e. of events happening in time and the physical 
space, as the foundational stance.

As a matter of fact all events in CRMbase are subclasses of crm:E4 
Period : "This class comprises sets of coherent phenomena or cultural 
manifestations occurring in time and space."
And, as we all know, it is precisely the crm:E4 Period class that 
introduces the two properties establishing a relationship of events to 
space (crm:P8 took place on or within → crm:E18 Physical Thing ; crm:P7 
took place at → crm:E53 Place) .

Furthermore, crm:E4 Period is at the same time a subclass of E2 Temporal 
Entity, the class providing the time-span projection and the temporal 
relationships, _*and* of_ E92 Spacetime Volume, last being defined as 
comprising "4-dimensional point sets (volumes) in physical spacetime (in 
contrast to mathematical models of it, or the models of quantum 
mechanics) regardless their true geometric forms. They may derive their 
identity from being the extent of a material phenomenon or from being 
the interpretation of an expression defining an extent in spacetime." 
Space-time (physical, not mathematical) is thus central in the 
foundational view of the CRM.

In addition, crm:E52 Time-Span is defined as "abstract temporal extent, 
in the sense of Galilean physics" and crm:E53 Place as an "extent in 
space, in particular on the surface of the earth, in the pure sense of 
physics: independent from temporal phenomena and matter". Both are 
conceived as projections of physical phenomena into reference systems.

Finally, we can read in literature that the choice of not having phases 
or states, in the CRM, but just events "was inspired by considerations 
of modern physics, which considers Events as complex interactions with 
non-negligible temporal extent, leading into phases of stability with 
fuzzy (if any) temporal boundaries." This explains why "The CRM 
encourages the description of transitions rather than the states or 
situations in between them". Doerr Martin, Hunter Jane and Lagoze Carl, 
Towards a Core Ontology for Information Integration. /Journal of Digital 
Information/ 4 (1), 2003, 5.1 About Situations and Events 
(http://journals.tdl.org/jodi/article/view/92).


With all this said (respectively before our eyes), it would be almost 
impossible, for an informed observer, not to think that classical 
physics provides the foundational perpective, or the fundamental insight 
that establishes the essential ontological categories of the CRM events 
and its analsys of the domain of discourse of "the scholarly views of 
museum curators and a set of other disciplines dealing with historical 
facts of the past". And that these facts are considered under the 
perspective of their spatio-temporal extent and characteristics.

I do not criticise this choice at all or discuss it at all as it can be 
considered as entirely appropriate in order to establish a ground 
ontology aimed at integrating factual information about cultural 
heritage physical objects.

Concerning conceptual objects, even the crm:E65 Creation class, 
producing instances of the crm:E28 Conceptual Object class, is to be 
considered in this view —insofar as it is a subclass of crm:E4 Period— 
as an event happening in space and time, as the substratum of the 
intellectual event happening in the mind of the artist or poet. The same 
applies to social events, such as the crm:E66 Formation of a group or 
crm:E8 Acquisition of a physical thing: it this their projection in 
physical reality that is considered, in application of the applied 
foundational view, not their social dimension and the analysis of what 
happens in the minds of the participants.


Thus, the point I was making, and that started our exchanges, is that if 
we want to model social events or phenomena *as such*, like acquisitions 
and ownership, joining groups and memberships, shared opinions in social 
networks and radicalisations, etc., i.e. as phenomena in human minds, 
individually or collectively, we need an extension of CRM applying a 
different and complementary foundational perspective.

As a matter of fact, social philosophy, social psychology and social 
sciences generally consider —as a standard view— that this kind of 
social phenomena happen in the minds and the social space as a 
collective space of the activities of individual human minds and as a 
result of individual, shared and/or collective intentionality (cf. e.g. 
Gallotti Mattia and Michael John (éds.), /Perspectives on Social 
Ontology and Social Cognition/, Dordrecht, Springer Netherlands, 2014 or 
Sammut Gordon et al. (éds.), /The Cambridge Handbook of Social 
Representations/, Cambridge, University Press, 2015).


In the CRMsoc extensions that George and myself are developing, and 
already proposed and will propose to discussion to the next SIG, we 
therefore propose to adopt the foundational perspecive of a 
phenomenology of social phenomena compatible with standard approaches 
both in social philosophy and in social sciences as an effort to 
carefully distinguish the physical and the social space and to add a 
well grounded layer of social events and states ontop of the events in 
the physical world that is consistent with CRMbase and its focus.

Therefore, in my perspective, "the speech act/social event is *not* 
identical to the crm:E8 Acquisition" (see below), the latter being the 
projection or setting in the physical world of the former which happens 
in the minds of the participants and the social space – and is not seen 
by our dogs. According to the distinction of foundational approaches, 
and the epistemological layering, the same human happening can be split 
into distinct physical and social events (in an appropriate extension) 
and this allows to capture the complexity of the happening, from 
different perspectives, as shown in the examples brought into the 
discussion by Rob and George : an archeological expedition (as social 
and physical endeavour) ended with 'came home empty handed' (or no death 
after a murder attempt): this is a specifically individual and social 
failure in relation to a personal/social project or plan, or an 
expectation by the funding agency, but not a physical event.


I consider that we should have an open discussion on ways of modelling 
social phenomena, and try to find a common vision in the SIG, in order 
to produce extensions of the CRM grounded in scientific standards that 
are not the same in different domains of discourse, and disciplines. 
And, indeed, it will be a pleasure for me to resume in the next future 
our exchanges, as in the past, in preparation for the next SIG.


I also kindly ask to have this post as a new issue on foundational 
perspectives and stances in CRM base and extentions.


All the best

Francesco




Le 07.01.22 à 20:33, Martin Doerr a écrit :
> Dear Francesco,
>
> Please let us not confuse everything. The CRM is in no ways grounded 
> in physics. It is grounded in the scholarly views of museum curators 
> and a set of other disciplines dealing with historical facts of the 
> past in careful collaborations over 25 years. Please study the history 
> of the CRM, beginning from the Smithsonian in Washington. The CRM is 
> compatible with GIS systems, physics, biology and othersciences, but 
> does not describe their theories, but exclusively particular facts of 
> the past. It includes social constructs already, and no no ways 
> excludes social disciplines.
>
> The only real bias of the CRM is purely technological and inevitable: 
> Information integration via machines based on binary logic, as a means 
> to link context-free identifiable individuals from human provided 
> data, which form a small but important subset of historical data, 
> which the a collaborative empirical result of the work of the CRM-SIG. 
> This determines the modelling principles of the CRM.
>
> If you introduce other functions or principles of modeling, we have 
> first to understand their new epistemic function in the scientific 
> discourse, and understand if and how binary logic based machines etc, 
> may be able to process them epistemically correctly for the intended 
> purpose. If you introduce other functions or principles of modeling, 
> the model will necessarily be different from the CRM itself and 
> possibly incompatible.
>
> This *cannot* be discussed vi a e-mail exchange, it is too complex. 
> Any such attempt would increase the already existing confusion of 
> epistemic and  technological insights and necessities. We have to 
> organize vitual face-to-face meetings for that purpose.
>
> My previous messages where *solely* about the word "outcome" and its 
> polysemy. I perfectly understand the word. I only tried to make the 
> CRM audience aware of the ontological methodologic questions necessary 
> to reveal the polysemy of this word and enable choosing the senses 
> that can be modelled adequately. I also tried, without success, to 
> make you aware of the extreme context dependency of any such word. If 
> this has been misunderstood, we need to discuss this *face-to-face 
> *with enough time. The necessary explanations and disambiguations 
> definitely exceed my writing capacities.
>
> Looking forward to a substantial face-to-face discussion and 
> resolution of any misunderstanding,
>
> Best wishes,
>
> Martin
>
> On 1/6/2022 9:03 PM, Francesco Beretta wrote:
>>
>> Dear Martin, and (indirectly) Rob and George,
>>
>> Thank you for your comments.
>>
>> Le 06.01.22 à 18:13, Martin Doerr via Crm-sig a écrit :
>>> Dear Francesco,
>>>
>>> Your arguments well taken, I repeat:
>>>
>>> The *speech act in CRM is identical to the sale, (Acquisition),* if 
>>> at all the speech act has a legal character, and if at all the sale 
>>> is executed via speech act, and not via e-commerce or whatsoever.
>>
>> The point is: why care at all about building CRMsoc if everything is 
>> already present in CRMbase? And, furthermore, are we sure that we 
>> have a well grounded foundational analysis of social facts in 
>> CRMbase? Especially as we know that it's grounded in the epistemic 
>> view of classical physic (I mean not quantic)?  Isn't this a somehow 
>> different domain of discourse from social life as such? And shouldn't 
>> we take car not to model a domain without taking into account the 
>> paradigms of the disciplines studying the domain under consideration, 
>> i.e. social life?
>>
>>
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