Knowledge Engineering - Overview of Trends in Knowledge Engineering

Overview of Trends in Knowledge Engineering

Some of the trends in Knowledge Engineering in the last few years are discussed in this section.The text below is a brief overview of paper "Knowledge Engineering: Principles and methods" authored by Rudi Studer, V. Richard Benjamins and Dieter Fensel.

The paradigm Shift from a transfer view to a modeling view

According to the transfer view the human knowledge required to solve a problem is transferred and implemented into the knowledge base. However this assumes that concrete knowledge is already present in humans to solve a problem. The transfer view disregards the tacit knowledge an individual acquires in order to solve a problem. This is one of the reasons for a paradigm shift towards modeling view. This shift is compared to a shift from first generation expert systems to second generation expert systems.

The modeling view is a closer approximate of reality and perceives solving problems as a dynamic, cyclic, incessant process dependent on the knowledge acquired and the interpretations made by the system. This is similar to how an expert solves problems in real life.

The evolving of Role Limiting methods and Generic Tasks

Role limiting methods are based on reusable problem solving methods. Different knowledge roles are decided and the knowledge expected from each of these roles is clarified. However the disadvantage of role limiting methods is that there is no logical means of deciding whether a specific problem can be solved by a specific role-limiting method.

This disadvantage gave rise to Configurable role limiting methods. Configurable role limiting methods are based on the idea that a problem solving method can further be broken up into several smaller sub tasks each task solved by its own problem solving method.

Generic Tasks include a rigid knowledge structure, a standard strategy to solve problems, a specific input and a specific output.

The GT approach is based on the strong interaction problem hypothesis which states that the structure and representation of domain knowledge is completely determined by its use

The usage of Modeling Frameworks

The development of Specification languages and problem solving methods of knowledge based systems.Over the past few years the modeling frameworks that became prominent within Knowledge engineering are Common KADS, MIKE (Model-based and Incremental knowledge engineering) and PROTÉGÉ-II.PROTÉGÉ-II is a modeling framework influenced by the concept of ‘Ontology’.

The influence of Ontology

Ontologies help building model of a domain and define the terms inside the domain and the relationships between them. There are different types of Ontologies including Domain ontologies, Generic ontologies, application ontologies and representational ontologies.

While categorizing knowledge, storing, retrieving and managing information is not only useful for solving problems without direct need of human expertise but also leads to ‘Knowledge Management’ efforts that enable an organization to function efficiently in the long run.

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