Spatial semantics in difference spaces

Tanasescu, V. (2007). Spatial semantics in difference spaces. In: Winter, S.; Duckham, M.; Kulik, L. and Kuipers, B. eds. Spatial Information Theory. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Berlin: Springer, pp. 96–115.



Higher level semantics are considered useful in the geospatial domain, yet there is no general consensus on the form these semantics should take. Indeed, knowledge representation paradigms such as classification based ontologies do not always pay tribute to the complexity of geospatial semantics. Other approaches, originating from psychology, linguistics, philosophy or cognitive sciences are regularly investigated to enrich the GIScientist's representational toolbox. However, each of these techniques is often used to the exclusion of others, creating new representational difficulties, or merely as a useful addendum to host theories with which they only superficially integrate. The present work is an attempt to introduce a common ground to these techniques by reducing them to the notion of differences or difference spaces. Differences are discernible properties of the environment, detected or produced by a computational process. I describe the following semantic frameworks: category-based ontologies, conceptual spaces, affordance based models, image schemata, and multi representation, explaining how each of them can be projected to a model based on differences. Illustrative examples from table top and geographic space are produced in order to show the model in use.

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