May 1, 2015

Travel & Communication

Kbase Thing

Travel in Cyc is dealt with as an event. There are several kinds of travel events, so lets consider three salient kinds: translational motion, locomotion, and taking a trip.

Translational motion events cause a location change; thus the moving object ends up in a different place than it started from: the destination is not the same as the origin. Thus, a round-trip travel event is not a translational motion event.

In locomotion events powered by a person, the object moving is an animal. Notable kinds of locomotion events include climbing, swimming, and walking on two legs. Other kinds include types of events, such as single-person canoeing and skating, in which a person moves himself or herself using a device to which s/he supplies the motive force. Note that locomotion events involving several animals working together; e.g., tandem bicycling, a crew team rowing a boat, running a three-legged race; are a different kind of locomotion event.

Each trip is an event in which a person or a group of people prepares for a trip, boards a conveyance, travels on the conveyance, and disembarks the conveyance. For somewhat more complex events that involve repeating that procedure on a return leg, there are concepts like “round trip”.

Communication as an event is one in which the transfer of information between or among agents is a focal action; communicating is the main purpose and/or goal in the event. That may be contrasted with events which involve communication but wherein the focus is different, e.g., playing cards (wherein the progressive actions — and winning — of the game are focal). Since communicating is a kind of purposeful action, each communicating event must be intentional on the part of the sender of information; it may or may not be intentional on the part of the recipient. Hence, a speaker on a soapbox haranguing an indifferent crowd is communicating. In contrast, Juliet soliloquizing on her balcony, unaware that Romeo is listening to her, is not communicating; this information transfer would be considered eavesdropping, not communicating. Communicating may be either a one-way or a two-way transfer of information. Every communication contains at least one transfer of information between at least two agents who participate in the event. (Note that the latter requirement excludes reading and writing from communicating, when those events are just the private accessing or generating of information.) Communicating may be specialized in various ways, such as, by the method or medium used (e.g., audio, non-verbal, face-to-face presence); by the type of information involved (e.g., making an agreement); by the purpose of the communication (e.g., teaching, negotiating); by the agents involved (e.g., intra-organization communications, stage production). Examples of communication include a symphony performance, an email message, a telephone call, a speech, a handshake, issuing a traffic ticket — all of which normally, and focally, involve communication between two or more agents.