Knowledge Exploration Technologies Laboratory


Knowledge Exploration Technologies
: Software or interfaces consisting of a database, knowledge base, or XML based web service tools for querying and structuring, and interfaces for information visualisation and information representation. Knowledge exploration technologies typically allow agents to interactively explore knowledge in order to augment human intellect and to facilitate discourse (cf. pragmatism).

agent
: A human user or a piece of software which simulates certain information processing behaviour and demonstrates a certain amount of independence in its behaviour. Non-human animals can be considered agents but since they are not normally interested in knowledge exploration technologies, they are irrelevant for this website. It can be argued that human users process knowledge or information, whereas software agents only process information.
augmenting human intellect
: Douglas Engelbart coined the phrase "augmenting human intellect" for building tools that increase a human's capabilities for complex problem solving. In Engelbart's notion tools aid humans. This notion should be distinguished from the notion of "Intelligence Augmentation" in AI, which refers to more invasive interfaces between humans and tools, such as Cyborgs.
data
: The input for information processing devices or agents.
external cognition
: Yvonne Rogers and Mike Scaife coined the phrase "external cognition" for the role played by external representations of information, such as diagrams and texts, in human cognition and for the relationship between external and internal representations in general. Peirce's notion of an interpretant in a sign relation can be used to describe external cognition.
information
: Data which is processed or communicated.
information representation
: The structures and techniques for representing information. A special kind of information representation is information visualisation.
information visualisation
: A form of information representation which uses graphical elements in addition to or instead of textual elements.
interpretant
: According to Charles Sanders Peirce's semiotics, an interpretant mediates between a representamen (or physical form) and an object (denotation or meaning) in a sign relation. Interpretants are relevant for explaining external cognition and for distinguishing knowledge from data and information.
knowledge
: In contrast to data and to information, knowledge is a structured system of concepts and relationships that is stored in an agent's mind. What is stored in databases can only be considered knowledge if it is interpreted and understood by an agent. Using Peirce's semiotics, it can be argued that in contrast to data and information, knowledge requires the existence of an interpretant.
knowledge exploration
: The process of investigating, browsing, discovering, querying and using knowledge. Often consisting of external exploration of information (cf. external cognition) and internal reorganisation of knowledge in an agent's mind. For the purpose of knowledge exploration, information can be represented externally on paper or on computer interfaces which can be manipulated by an agent via devices, such as a pen, mouse or keyboard. Often, the information is graphically represented (cf. information visualisation).
knowledge representation
: Better called information representation because only an agent can decide whether something is knowledge or information.
knowledge understanding
: The process of integrating information with already existing knowledge in an agent's mind.
pragmatism
: According to Charles Sanders Peirce's pragmatism, scientific inquiry is collaborative, continually improving and generates consequences.


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