Published on Thu Jan 12 2017

From First-Order Logic to Assertional Logic

Yi Zhou

First-Order Logic (FOL) is widely regarded as one of the most important foundations for knowledge representation. We propose an alternative called assertional logic, in which all syntactic objects are categorized as set theoretic constructs. All kinds of knowledge are formalized by equality assertions.

0
0
0
Abstract

First-Order Logic (FOL) is widely regarded as one of the most important foundations for knowledge representation. Nevertheless, in this paper, we argue that FOL has several critical issues for this purpose. Instead, we propose an alternative called assertional logic, in which all syntactic objects are categorized as set theoretic constructs including individuals, concepts and operators, and all kinds of knowledge are formalized by equality assertions. We first present a primitive form of assertional logic that uses minimal assumed knowledge and constructs. Then, we show how to extend it by definitions, which are special kinds of knowledge, i.e., assertions. We argue that assertional logic, although simpler, is more expressive and extensible than FOL. As a case study, we show how assertional logic can be used to unify logic and probability, and more building blocks in AI.