From: Pat Hayes (
Date: 04/04/02

>At 2:35 PM +0000 4/4/02, Lemmer John F Civ AFRL/IFTB wrote:
>>As a potenial DAML +OIL user, but one who will probably not go that 
>>route, here is my 2 cents worth.  Every new thing like DAML exits 
>>somewhere in a tradeoff between academic elegance and practical 
>>utility.  From what I see of DAML, it is way to far from utility 
>>and way to close to (attempted) elegance.
>>It seems DAML is re-fighting (and still not winning) the wars the 
>>KR community has been struggling with for at least the last 20 
>It is so good to see our Air Force researcher lab staff so 
>open-mindedly examining a new technology

Oh come on: DAML isn't a NEW technology. Its a description logic, is 
all, rendered into a barbaric notation, and with a botched interface 
to a triple-store mechanism (for which botching I bear part of the 
blame, to be honest) and burdened with an ill-defined commitment to 
using URIs as universal identifiers in some as-yet-still-unspecified 

>  - I hope that this will not come back to haunt them during AFSAB 
>reviews.  I'd love to hear from John why he thinks that DAML is not 
>winning - I cannot remember another AI language that ever has had so 
>much public interest, web use, and moved into standardization by a 
>major body -- in fact, in hype we probably lag behind the old expert 
>systems days, but in acceptance we seem to be moving beyond and 
>winning acceptance.  Perhaps the military seems to be moving slow 
>(as usual), but the Web Ontology Working Group includes such small 
>companies as Intel, Daimler-Chrysler, EDS, Fujitsu, HP, Intel, 
>Lucent, Nokia, Philips Electronics, and Unisys -- with a couple of 
>other big players talking to me about joining.  There's also a rumor 
>around that IBM Research has included Semantic Web-related work in 
>their strategic plan -- in short, we're seeing a positive interest 
>that had not been seen in this way in the past (except maybe for the 
>expert systems days - which all these companies, and many of the 
>rest of the Fortune 500, are using regularly).

Sure, keeping a keen eye on what the SW is up to, particularly once 
one has already paid ones W3C membership costs in any case, is 
probably a no-brainer for any significant IT company. Endorsing 
DAML+OIL is something else again, however.

>  Perhaps John's message helps explain why Air Force F-16s are flying 
>with 240,000 lines of Jovial code in their controllers and why the 
>DoD is still maintaining that Corba, not Java, is the language of 
>the future...

If F-16s ever get controllers written in Java then I'm going to hide 

>   -JH
>p.s. John - you're lucky I'm not the PM anymore - if you sent a 
>messgae like the above when I was PM you'd be looking for another 
>program to support.

Now, now, Jim! You know its not considered good form to threaten the 
servants, even if they do annoy you sometimes with their talkative 


>Professor James Hendler
>Director, Semantic Web and Agent Technologies	  301-405-2696
>Maryland Information and Network Dynamics Lab.	  301-405-6707 (Fax)
>AV Williams Building, Univ of Maryland		  College Park, MD 20742

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