Knowledge Representation and Nets


ISSN: 0368-492X

Article publication date: 1 April 2000



(2000), "Knowledge Representation and Nets", Kybernetes, Vol. 29 No. 3.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

Knowledge Representation and Nets

Knowledge Representation and Nets

Keywords: Publication, Knowledge, Cybernetics

There is a great deal of common ground in fields such as knowledge representation, learning theories, cognitive science, structural modelling, psychology of education etc. All form part of the multidisciplinary studies encompassed by cybernetics and systems. Kluwer Academic have published a text which claims to introduce fresh approaches to knowledge representation researchers. The book is:

Knowledge Representation and Relation Nets

Alletta Geldenhuys, Hendrik O. van Rooyen and Franz SletterThe Kluwer International Series in Engineering and Computer Science 5061999296 pp.ISBN 0-7923-8517-9Hardbound £84.50 (US$130)

This book is in three parts: Structural modelling of knowledge; A CRKS for a programming language; relation nets. The text is said to have been written so that it can be used to organise study material in a "convenient, teachable and learning form".The method used extends and formalises concept mapping by developing knowledge representation as a structure of concepts and the relationships among them. It is claimed that such a formal description of analogy results in a controlled method of modelling in terms of "existing" knowledge in teaching and learning situations, and its applications result in a consistent and well-organised approach to problem solving.

The theory of relation of nets is dealt with in detail in Part III of the book and the authors are at pains to say that readers need not master the formal mathematics in order to apply the theory to this method of knowledge representation. Chapters start with a brief summary and the important concepts are illustrated by examples. The book also aims to give an intuitive view of the formal notions used in the applications presented by using diagrams, informal descriptions, and simple sets of construction rules.

The publishers see it as "an excellent source for teachers, courseware designers and researchers", in many other fields in addition to knowledge representation studies.

The first two authors listed are from the University of South Africa and the last from the UniversitÌt Mannheim, Germany.