Dear Florian, All,

It is not clear to me why people do not want to use E18 for Aggregates that are not intended to grow over time in the sense of a collection. The time, how long they are together, does not play a role. The question is only, if they are well defined and identified for some time.

For biodiversity scenaria, we have used a concept of Temporary Aggregate which exists only within an Activity, such as a catch of plankton and counting the species in it.

Since the CRM does not model subclasses without distinct properties, the Auction Lot is an E18, and you are free to introduce your own subclass for it.

Making E78 any aggregate, we come in conflicts separating it from E18. NOTE, that an E18 does not require physical coherence, such as sets of chessmen etc. We would then have competing models, if the distinction cannot be made clearly.

We have discussed repeatedly, that a useful distinction of "non-aggregates" from "aggregates" cannot be made.




On 10/21/2019 1:43 PM, Florian Kräutli wrote:
Dear George,

This is indeed a problem I too have encountered often. The scope note of E78 suggests a rather narrow definition of a collection, but there is no satisfactory alternative for modelling the type of collections you describe.

However, instead of introducing another class and then having to come up with criteria that separate a 'set' from a 'curated holding' I would rather extend the examples under E78 to include other types of aggregates.

Personally, I would interpret the current scope note to allow for auction lots, as you describe them, to be understood as E78 Curated Holding. The term in the scope note that might stand in the way is that the aggregation is said to be assembled "according to a particular collection development plan". An auction lot is not generally assembled by following a collection development plan, but it is nevertheless purposefully put together. I wonder whether that term is necessary or if it is a remnant of the definition of E78 as a Collection.



On 20. Oct 2019, at 18:55, George Bruseker <> wrote:

Dear all,

At the recent event, the group was attempting to model information related to auctions. It happens that during auctions, lots (collections or sets of things) are created with the intention that things will be sold together. Ie they are aggregates. In facing the question of modelling this, we seem to have some options.

1) E78 Curated Holding... it's a stretch, but there was a 'plan' to hold these things together for a day or so and to sell them together

2) E19 Physical Thing... CRM SIG has in the past recommended modelling aggregates of things as being an E19 with parts. 

The above solutions are somewhat unsatisfactory since 1 goes against the intended usage of E78, one imagines, and 2 requires one instantiating a physical thing (well this holds mutatis mutandi for E78) for an aggregate that will possibly only ever be together once. In fact, since the objects are only put together in the lot for the intention of sale, they may not have had to have been physically brought together as a physical item ever. In this sense modelling them with either E78 or E19 seems to break ontological commitment (ie we do not think that these things were ever brought together or treated physically as one).

Because also has members in the group who represent modern art museums, the discussion also comes upon the possibility that included in the lot of things sold may be some sort of intellectual thing, no physical object at all. Obviously because of its nature, we could not bundle a conceptual object with a physical object using physical mereology relations. So... modelling difficulty ahoy!

Could we take up this discussion during SIG (or if there is already a satisfactory solution overlooked can it be referred to)? 

To me it seems to raise the question of the possibility of defining a conceptual object class for 'set', although I am sure this will open up a large discussion!

Look forward to see you all soon!



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 Dr. Martin Doerr
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