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XML Topic Maps: Creating and Using Topic Maps for the Web by Jack Park, Sam Hunting

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What Is the Conversation About?

What is the subject of this chapter? Very abruptly stated, it could be: What is a subject? This central identity question is indeed at the heart of all knowledge interchange issues, and the topic maps paradigm and specifications are about catching subjects in system representations. This fundamental process, referred to in topic maps terminology as reification, is at first sight as simple and straightforward as the basic language activity of catching the universe in words. Creating a new topic in a topic map is a process similar to the introduction of a new word in our vocabulary, representing a new subject in our knowledge. As a word or an image or an icon may be, a topic in a topic map is a sign both dreadfully ...

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