By Jerry Bobrow (Auth.)
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A pattern with substructure can be matched against a structured unknown, and the unknown decomposed into subparts corresponding to those in the pattern. A parsing system is a complicated pattern matcher whose purpose is to find substructures corresponding to patterns in the grammar. In certain matches, what is critical is the form or direction of the error in the match. In hill climbing or relaxation techniques, a first approximation to a solution is corrected by use of this error term. Kuipers (Chapter 6) discusses using errors of prediction as a guide in pattern recognition.
With what the notations and structures used in a semantic network can mean, and with interpretations of what these links mean that will be logically adequate to the job of representing knowledge. I want to focus on several issues: the meaning of "semantics", the need for explicit understanding of the intended meanings for various types of arcs and links, the need for careful thought in choosing conventions for representing facts as assemblages of arcs and nodes, and several specific difficult problems in knowledge representation—especially problems of relative clauses and quantification.
That is, given a Lindsay-type data base of family units, we would not want to be compelled to store explicitly all of the instances of unclehood that could be inferred from the basic family units. If we were to carry such a program to its logical conclusion, we would have to store explicitly all of the possible inferable relations, a practical impossibility since in many cases the number of such inferables is effectively infinite. Hence the internal structure which we desire must have some instances of unclehood stored directly and others left to be deduced from more basic family relationships, thus demolishing any hope of a canonical form representation.