SNAP/SPAN in Basic Formal Ontology: an Aristotelian suggestion

Title: SNAP/SPAN in Basic Formal Ontology: an Aristotelian suggestion
Source document: ProInflow. 2013, vol. 5, iss. 1, pp. 55-65
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Type: Article
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Basic Formal Ontology (Základní formální ontologie, zkr. BFO) vyvíjená Barry Smithem a jeho spolupracovníky je fundamentální ontologie užívaná v informační vědě k popisu entit na nejvyšší úrovni obecnosti. Jedním z nápadných rysů BFO je rozdělení entit na ty, které trvají (continuants) a jsou součástí ontologie SNAP (snap = snímek), a na ty, které se dějí (occurents) a jsou součástí ontologie SPAN (span = rozpětí). Toto dělení je motivováno kontroverzí mezi endurantismem a perdurantismem v současné analytické metafyzice. V tomto článku, v návaznosti na Aristotela, navrhuji v zájmu realismu určitou modifikaci Smithova přístupu.
Basic Formal Ontology (BFO), developed by Barry Smith and his colleagues, is a foundational ontology used in information science for the description of entities at the highest level of generality. One of the salient features of BFO is the division of entities into continuants of so-called SNAP (or snapshot) ontology and occurents of so-called SPAN (or spanning time) ontology. The division is motivated by an apparent impasse in the endurantist/perdurantist controversy in recent analytical metaphysics. In this paper, drawing on Aristotle, I suggest a realism-supporting modification of Smith's approach.
  • The work on this paper was supported by the Post-doctoral Fellowship in "Analytical Scholasticism" (Rozvoj postdoktorandských pozic na JU, CZ.1.07/2.3.00/30.0049).
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