Some things read this week, 22 – 28 April 2007

Seems I snuck a bit more reading in yesterday; although I’ll leave the things I re-read out. I did manage to finish FRAD.

Saturday, 21 Apr 2007

Levinson, Jerrold. “What a musical work is.” The Journal of Philosophy 77 (1), Jan.. 1980: 5-28. (JSTOR)

Keep in mind that this is only my opinion and that I could be completely wrong. Also, honestly, I have little education in music. That said, this is one of the worst articles that I have ever read. It is surely the worst I have read that was published in The Journal of Philosophy. There were perhaps two actual claims in this article with which I could agree, and one I had to qualify.

I almost gave up reading this article several times last night. I literally had to force my way through it as I repeatedly reminded myself of the moral obligation I had to my class (Ontologies). Except for the fact that I respect my classmates and our guest lecturer this week, Dave Dubin, I would not have read past the first couple pages. And, honestly, I want the hour or so it took me to read it back.

Levinson makes it clear that he is restricting his discussion to what he calls, “that paradigm of a musical work, the fully notated “classical” composition of Western culture, for example, Beethoven’s Quintet for piano and winds in E-flat, Opus 16″ (6). One of his aims is to retain the concept of composing as a truly creative act. While this is a noble aim, which accords with our commonsense notion of artistic creation, one should not end up with such a ridiculous theory just to support commonsense.

I will primarily try to keep my mouth shut in class while we discuss this, but I also know that that will be impossible. I do have a few specific questions, though. My main one will be along the lines of, “Do we speak of textual works like this?” “Is it the case that the reception of, interpretation of, and experience of a textual work are part of what defines it as a work?

I do think Levinson is explicating some important concepts about music here. I just don’t think that he is discussing works as the same concept as, say, FRBR, or Svenonius, Tillett, Smiraglia, or Vellucci does. And if, in fact, it is work that he is discussing then it is an extremely narrow and elitist notion of work. It is in no way a commonsense notion of work at all, even if he has saved some commonsense notions of artistic creation.

His logic is also incoherent at times, or, perhaps, I ought to say that the implications of his logic are incoherent. He seems to choose what he uses logic for and which implications he wants and which he can ignore.

A complete waste of my time. I am not looking forward to discussion of this article.

Update: Discussion went pretty well, actually. I am certainly no more enamored of Levinson’s theory, but several people including the class musicologist seemed to think that Levinson would gladly accept my contention that under his theory he has not heard any works of Beethoven, but only performances of … what I don’t know. They also agreed that this theory leads to an explosion of entities. Whether or not this is good or bad, or can be handled by catalogs elicited vastly different responses. All in all, I was proud of myself during discussion despite my utter uselessness for this piece for the purpose of which it purports. Again, I think Levinson is discussing some important issues in music, and broader, but it is not the concept of works.

Saturday – Monday, 21 – 23 Apr 2007

Khoo, Christopher S. G. and Jin-Cheon Na. (2006). “Semantic relations in information science.” Annual Review of Information Science and Technology 40 Medford, NJ: Information Today, p. 157-228.

This is an excellent article that I first read last December while working on my paper for 590TR Information Transfer and Collaboration in Science. My paper was a “representative literature review on the topic of mapping different thesauri and the uses of such for the organization of information to meet the needs of interdisciplinary scientists.” As such, some article I read—now lost to me—pointed me to this article by Khoo and Na. Many of the articles I was reading on mapping thesauri raised the issue of whether or not inter-concept relationships within a single thesaurus could truly carry over into a multiply-mapped thesauri, especially in the context of multilingual thesauri. I was considering my problem of mapping across scientific domains to be very similar to “true” multilingual mapping, thus, I decided this might be a highly relevant piece to read. I ended up finding it fascinating!

It is also the piece which put me on to Bean & Green and Rebecca Green, period. For that I shall be ever grateful. I re-read it as I work on my presentation on relationships for RO this Wednesday morning.

I highly recommend this piece to all and sundry. Since it is a lit review you could certainly skip over the parts you aren’t so interested in, although I seriously recommend the entire piece. To tempt you, here is an outline based on the section, subsection headings:

    • Overview
    • What are Semantic Relations
      • Semantic Relations in Language and Logic
      • The Psychological Reality of Semantic Relations
      • Semantic Relations in Semantic Memory
    • Types of Semantic Relations
      • Overview
      • Lexical-Semantic Relations
      • Case Relations
      • Relations Between Larger Text Segments
    • Selected Semantic Relations
      • Hyponym-Hyperonym Relation
      • Troponymy Relation
      • Meronym-Holonym Relation
      • Synonymy
      • Antonymy
      • Cause-Effect Relation
    • Semantic Relations in Knowledge Structures
      • Semantic Relations in Thesauri
      • Semantic Relations in Indexing Languages
      • Semantic Relations in Ontologies
    • Automatic Identification of Semantic Relations
      • Overview
      • Automatic Identification of Semantic Relations Using Pattern Matching
      • Automatic Construction of Extraction Patterns
      • Text Mining for Semantic Relations
      • Automatic Construction of Case Frames
    • Semantic Relations in Information Retrieval
      • Overview
      • Semantic Relations in Query Expansion
        • Query Expansion Using Term Association
        • Query Expansion Using Lexical-Semantic Relations
      • Relation Matching for Precision Enhancement
      • Question-Answering with Full-Text Documents
      • Semantic Relations in Automatic Text Summarization
    • Conclusion
    • References (approx. 20 pages)

Sunday, 22 Apr 2007

Sanger, Larry. “Who says we know: On the new politics of knowledge.” Edge (The Third Culture column, 2007.

This could be a bit old by now as it was the Library Link of the Day yesterday and I find them to be a bit behind on many things (and, of course, I’m not posting this for almost a week).

Reasonably interesting article from one of the co-founders of Wikipedia, and founder of Citizendium.

[Somewhere this week I saw a link to an article taking on Sanger, but I have no idea where anymore.]

Smith, Barry. “John Searle: From Speech Acts to Social Reality.” In: John Searle. Cambridge University Press, 2003. pp 7-35. [pdf]

Read for Ontologies this week.

Searle, John. “The Structure of the Social Universe: How the Mind Creates an Objective Social Reality.” In: John Searle. Mind, Language, and Society Basic Books 1998. pp. 111-134.

Also for Ontologies this week.

Monday, 23 Apr 2007

Hjørland, Birger. “Library and information science and the philosophy of science (Introduction to the Special Issue).” Journal of Documentation 61 (1), 2006: 5-10.

Cited by Lee, Renear and Smith. (2006). “Known-item search: Variations on a concept.” Read 3 Mar 2007. Available at E-LIS.

Hovy, Eduard. “Comparing sets of semantic relations in ontologies.” In Green, Bean and Myaeng, eds. The Semantics of relationships: An interdisciplinary perspective. Information Science and Knowledge Management series, v. 3. Dordrecht: Kluwer, 2002: 91-110.

Is an attempt to develop a method for comparing ontologies, both at a general level and at the level of terms and relationships.

Friday, 27 Apr 2007

Lancaster, F. W. and Virginia Gale. (2003). “Pertinence and relevance.” Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science.

Does a good job disambiguating the differences between pertinence and relevance and their applicability to information retrieval. Differentiates the following components of an information retrieval request and their interrelationships: Information need, Recognized need, Request statement (expressed need), Search strategy, Documents, and Representations of documents. Covers some of the literature on relevance (and pertinence). While the article goes to pains to point out the transience of pertinence decisions, it fails to cover many of the variables that affect these decisions. For a better explication of such see Green (2001) and Bean & Green (2001) [See here for the 2nd citation, Green is the overview article in the same book].

Thursday – Saturday, 26 – 28 Apr 2007

Beghtol, Clare. “Bibliographic classification theory and text linguistics: Aboutness analysis, intertextuality and the cognitive act of classifying documents.” Journal of Documentation 42 (2), June 1986: 84-113.

Distinguishes between a document’s aboutness and its meaning and then utilizes the text linguistic theory of T. A. van Dijk to suggest a theory of the cognitive process of classifying documents. Discusses two forms of intertexuality: “that between documents classified in the same class of the same classification system; and that between the classification system as a text in its own right and the documents that are classified by it” (84). Describes an experimental study that could be used to test the model presented. Also comments on the uses of text linguistics for theories of bibliographic classification.

This is a fairly complex article which bears close reading and, in truth, deserves a second reading. I did find, though, that it offers the best explication that I’ve seen so far as to what it is I am doing when I classify items. Should be required reading in all advanced cataloging classes, and perhaps late in the semester of intro classes.

The first several sections would also be usefully read in conjunction with Lancaster and Gale (2003, see above), and Bean & Green (2001) or Green (1995) and Green & Bean (1995) regarding “relevance.” [See here for full cites to these 3 articles.]

Highly recommended, but deserves some effort.

Cited in Beghtol, Clare. (2001) “Relationships in classificatory structure and meaning.” In Bean & Green, Relationships in the Organization of Knowledge. 99-113.

Saturday, 28 Apr 2007

Coates, E. J. “Classification in information retrieval: The twenty years following Dorking.” Journal of Documentation 34 (4), December 1978: 288-299.

Traces the developments in both classification theory and practice in the approximately twenty year period since the 1957 International Study Conference on Classification for Information Retrieval held at Dorking. Considers developments in both syntactic and semantic issues, along with implementation.

Two overarching trends are: (1) the lack of fundamental progress in classification theory at a fundamental level compared to earlier work by Ranganathan, and (2) a amazing output of new, and updating of previous, classifications, and indexing tools. Progress on the theoretical side included a refinement of concept of facets analysis, and, more importantly, “the realization that facets are themselves essentially the functions or superficial manifestations of relations between concepts belonging to different facet categories” (290).

Relational indexing schemes, such as those by Farradane, SYNTOL, Kergèvant, and Perreault are discussed. The work of the Classification Research Group on a new general classification that was abandoned, but eventually led to PRECIS is discussed.

Impressive developments in practice that were finally catching up to theory are brought out. Bliss Bibliographical Classification (BC2) is hailed as a major success on that head. One major disaster in classification is also discussed; that of the British National Bibliography (BNB) highly supplemented and faceted version of DDC 14 for an unsupplemented DDC 18. PRECIS, UDC, and BSO are also discussed; BSO primarily in the context of a switching language and for its accord with current theory.

A very interesting discussion, perhaps of serious import today, is a discussion of the initial impact of computerization on classification. The final topic is “Classification under fire,” which takes on suggestions of the day that “classification for information retrieval is obsolete or of dubious utility” (298).

Although this article is rapidly approaching 30 years of age, it is of extreme relevance today. In many ways, it points to the lack of further progress on the practical, implementation side of indexing languages writ large. It is also instructive in its final sections of the mistaken calls for classifications obsolescence in the face of full-text indexing and keyword indexing.

Highly recommended for both its succinct historical overview and for its applicability towards issues of the day in 2007. Should be required reading in advanced cataloging and indexing classes.

Cited in Beghtol, Clare. (2001) “Relationships in classificatory structure and meaning.” In Bean & Green, Relationships in the Organization of Knowledge. 99-113.

I’ve also done some re-reading of things for my annotated bibliography on relationships, as some of these are for it. But it’s time to post this as I doubt I’ll be reading anything else new tonight.

One down, more to go … but it’s reward time

Earlier today I gave my presentation of my paper in Ontologies. My presentation is entitled, “A Tale of Two Properties.” It is about using thesaural standards and practice to disambiguate the scope notes and examples of two CIDOC CRM properties (relationships).

It went pretty well.

After class, and the usual after-class discussion, I walked myself downtown to the Blind Pig for a reward. I enjoyed my 1st Guinness outdoors while I caught up with Bloglines and a lot of posts from CiL. I am now enjoying my 2nd pint sitting just inside the doors, but the doors are wide open. Which in the case of the Pig means basically the whole front “wall” is wide open.

I kind of wish I was at CiL as so many of my “diner friends” (see comment 3 & 4) are there, but I have a place I need to be right now. And that is school.

I now have a week to incorporate the additional material that I had in my presentation into my paper as my second paper. Shouldn’t be too difficult, except 1) I have another presentation to prepare for next Wednesday (and I have way too much stuff to choose from), and 2) Allen is talking about posting my paper to the CIDOC CRM discussion list.

I am happy with my efforts at disambiguating the P88 and P89 properties within CIDOC CRM for “geographical places,” but the entity (class) E53 Place is far broader than that, and FRBRoo (F12 Place) just makes it worse. I did take a 1st stab at giving examples for P88 and P89 in a FRBRoo world, but I’m unsure how far my analysis can be stretched. But the E53/F12 Place is already seriously over-stretched in the 1st place! Insanely overstretched! It definitely needs some subclasses.

My presentation for next week is for RO and is on “relationships.” Mostly those from the “bibliographic universe,” but I’ve read much wider than that. For instance, Green on relationships within the context of cognitive semantics.

After I give my presentation I have one more week to finish writing my book review (Bean & Green) and finish my annotated bibliography on my readings on relationships.

After class this evening I mentioned to Allen that I wish we had time to look at FRAD in Ontologies. He suggested that I suggest it for a discussion in Metadata Roundtable. Excellent idea, except I said I’d feel bad suggesting it but saying someone else needs to lead the discussion. He suggested a splitting up of the workload in a sort of team approach and even volunteered himself. Hmmm? Like I need more work! I still have to do my Terminology Services presentation, which may well end up being for this group.

But perhaps Allen, Kathryn, and I? Like Kathryn needs more work, too. But comments aren’t due until 15 July; maybe we have time to end the semester, me to “do” Terminology Services,” and for us to do this in MDRT, too. Hmmm? I’m crazy enough to try.

Some things read this week, 8 – 14 April 2007

Sunday, 8 Apr 2007

Vickery, B. C. “Ontologies.” Journal of Information Science 23 (4) 1997: 277-286.

Re-read for Representation and Organization. Originally read 10 Feb 07. Week 5 of RO got moved to Week 13.

This is a good overview of ontologies and the rise of the concept within knowledge engineering and information sicence.

Paglia, Camille. Break, blow, burn. 2005. Read:

Samuel Taylor Coleridge, “Kubla Khan”

Sunday – Monday, 8 – 9 Apr 2007

Velluci, Sherry L. “Bibliographic relationships.” In: Weihs, Jean, ed. The Principles and future of AACR: Proceedings of the International Conference on the Principles and Future Development of AACR, Toronto, Canada, Oct. 23-25, 1997: 105-146.

An excellent article that looks at the history and current status of thought on bibliographic relationships, both theoretical and empirical. The first section—Introduction; Background and Context—provides a short, but excellent, historical summary from Panizzi to Svenonius. The second section provides assorted breakdowns of types of bibliographic relationships. In this section, the author covers the three seminal works on bibliographic relationships—Tillett’s 1987 dissertation, Smiraglia’s 1992 dissertation, and Velluci’s 1997 Bibliographic relationships in music catalogs—amongst others. The third section, entitled User Needs: Navigating the Relationship Universe, is perhaps the widest ranging. It covers the dual function provided by linkages of relationships in the catalog, past and current linkage systems, link types and associated relationships, relationships of importance to users, user studies, the IFLA FRBR study, and the relationships important to authority record users. The fourth section covers methods for improving the expression of bibliographic relationships in an online environment. This section looks at both MARC and newer catalog environments, and considers the local versus global bibliographic universe. The final section is a one-page statement of “General Principles for Bibliographic Relationships in Catalogs.”

Throughout this article, Vellucci consistently points out the impact of, and the interlocked nature of, the descriptive cataloging rules and the structure and design of the catalog.

Highly recommended.

Monday – Wednesday, 9 – 11 Apr 2007

Weiss, Ron, et. al. “HyPursuit: A hierarchical network search engine that exploits content-link hypertext clustering.” Proceedings of the Seventh ACM Conference on Hypertext, Washington, DC, March 1996

This one was a bit beyond me in some ways, but it was cited in Broughton, V. “Structural, linguistic and mathematical elements in indexing languages and search engines: Implications for the use of index languages in electronic and non-LIS environments.” Read 2 April.

Tuesday – Thursday, 10 – 12 Apr 2007

Chew Chiat Naun. “FRBR principles applied to a local online journal finding aid.” Library Resources & Technical Services 51 (2), April 2007: 134-145.

This rather long article (by LRTS standards) is interesting as a post hoc analysis of a system that us folks at UIUC use pretty much daily, the ORR. It looks at the challenges to, and the problems that arose during, the creation of a database-driven, alphabetical list of journal resources.

While it could prove useful for most anyone interested in electronic resources, A-Z lists, FRBR and/or cataloging, I highly suggest it to all of you at UIUC who have used the ORR.

Thursday – Friday, 12 – 13 Apr 2007

Cruse, D. Alan. “Hyponymy and its varieties.” In Green, Bean and Myaeng, eds. The Semantics of relationships: An interdisciplinary perspective. Information Science and Knowledge Management series, v. 3. Dordrecht: Kluwer, 2002.

Hyponymy is the most pervasive structuring relationship, occurring “across the widest range of grammatical categories and content domains” (3). The article provides several definitions of a logical, collocational, and componential nature while working towards a prototype-theoretical characterization, with the result being that, so far, there exists no “fully satisfactory characterization of hyponymy” (12).

Simple hyponymy (is-A) is differentiated from the more discriminating form (is-a-kind-of), called taxonymy by Cruse. Three modes of subdividing categories are also explicated: the natural kind mode, the nominal kind mode, and the functional mode.

I found this article fairly difficult. It is written by “a lexical semanticist with a ‘cognitive linguistic’ bias” (3), and seems to assume a fair amount of prior knowledge. It is accessible, but may require a bit of work.


Friday – Saturday, 13 – 14 Apr 2007

Crawford, Walt. Cites & Insights: Crawford at Large 7 (5), May 2007.

Saturday, 14 Apr 2007

Fellbaum, Christiane. “On the semantics of troponymy.” In Green, Bean and Myaeng, eds. The Semantics of relationships: An interdisciplinary perspective. Information Science and Knowledge Management series, v. 3. Dordrecht: Kluwer, 2002.

Provides an interesting and very accessible look at the hyponymy relation amongst verbs, known as troponymy. Demonstrates why while related this is a different than simply being hyponymy, and that it is not a semantically homogeneous relationship. Differentiates three kinds of troponymy: manner, function, and result.

Definitely recommended.

Pribbenow, Simone. (2002) “Merynomic relationships: From classical mereology to complex part-whole relations.” In Green, Bean and Myaeng, eds. The Semantics of relationships: An interdisciplinary perspective. Information Science and Knowledge Management series, v. 3. Dordrecht: Kluwer, 2002.

Re-read for my RO project. Originally read 19 March. Looks at partonomic relations, particularly in human conceptual and perceptual domains. Discusses the formal theory of mereology and its extensions, focusing on where it fails to capture our common sense notion of parts. Finishes with a discussion of the Constructive Classification of Gerstl and Pribbenow, looking in detail at three kinds of relations in conceptual part-whole relations.

While there is a small amount of logic in it, the article is pretty understandable without it.

Recommended, especially as a critique of Classical Extensional Mereology and its (serious) limitations.

I think I’ll go ahead and post this although there are still several hours left in the day. I need to start thinking about cleaning up for a birthday party later.

These “Some things read…” posts may get a bit skimpy for the next couple of weeks. While I will be doing a fair amount of reading, it will be primarily re-reading as I finish up my projects for the semester. As much as there is still left to be read that I haven’t gotten to yet—whether I am already in possession or it is an untraced reference—there is no time for that, and a line has to be drawn once in a while.