Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

On Types


Published on

Thoughts on types and their relation to human cognition and language. From the open space session at TMRA 2009.

Published in: Technology, Education
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

On Types

  1. 1. Some observations on types<br />TMRA 2009, November 12, Leipzig<br />Lars Marius Garshol, &lt;;<br />
  2. 2. Types in IT<br />Types are extremely fundamental<br />datatypes in programming languages,<br />classes in OOP,<br />entities/packages/clusters/structs/records pre-OOP<br />entity types in ER and EXPRESS,<br />classes in UML,<br />classes in RDF,<br />topic types in Topic Maps,<br />...<br />
  3. 3. Types in language<br />Consider what nouns really are<br />specifically, common nouns<br />Aren’t most of them topic types?<br />car<br />pencil<br />country<br />person<br />computer<br />...<br />
  4. 4. Types in language (2)<br />What characterizes types is that they have instances<br />You can recognize potential types using a simple “language game”<br />for a potential type y, if there is an x such that you can say “x is a y”, y is a type<br />if you cannot, it is not a type<br />Examples<br />Germany is a country<br />___ is an electromagnetic force<br />
  5. 5. Class hierarchies<br /> Consider how we talk about concepts in everyday conversations<br />Child: “What is an ozelot?”<br />Grown-up: “It’s an animal.”<br />Child: “Oh. What kind of animal?”<br />Grown-up: “It’s a kind of cat.”<br />
  6. 6. Conclusion<br />Types are fundamental in IT because they are fundamental to how we think and speak<br />Likewise class hierarchies<br />