Inconsistency Tolerance (Dagstuhl Seminar 03241)

RL2, Publisher: Schloss Dagstuhl-Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik, Link>


Leopoldo Bertossi, Philippe Besnard, Anthony Hunter, Torsten Schaub


Database, Knowledgebase and Software systems, or their logical specifications, may become inconsistent in the sense of containing contradictory pieces of information. Since these types of technology are at some level based on classical logic, there is the major problem that in classical logic, any formula is implied by a contradiction. This therefore raises the need to circumvent this fundamental property of classical logic whilst supporting as much as possible of classical logic for these technologies. To address this, several new logics, with new formalisms, semantics and/or deductive systems, that can accommodate classical inconsistencies without becoming trivial, have been proposed. These logics are starting to be used in databases, knowledgebases and software specifications. In addition, we need strategies for analysing inconsistent information. This need has in part driven the approach of argumentation systems which compare pros and cons for potential conclusions from conflicting information. Also important are strategies for isolating inconsistency and for taking appropriate actions, including resolution actions. This calls for uncertainty reasoning and meta-level reasoning. Furthermore, the cognitive activities involved in reasoning with inconsistent information need to be directly related to the kind of inconsistency. So, in general, we see the need for inconsistency tolerance giving rise to a range of technologies for inconsistency management. We are now at an exciting stage in this direction. Rich foundations are being established, and a number of interesting and complementary application areas are being explored in decision-support …

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