Knowledge Representation & Reasoning

Knowledge Representation and Reasoning (KRR) is a subfield of artificial intelligence (AI) concerned with defining artificial languages to express or represent knowledge and devising methodologies and tools to reason with this knowledge. Formal studies of knowledge representation and reasoning with knowledge date back to ancient times. As an example, consider Aristotle’s famous syllogism:

“All men are mortal.

Socrates is a man.

Therefore, Socrates is mortal.”

The argument presented above is inarguably valid. The three above sentences are now commonly represented in first-order logic (FO). While the Greeks relied on philosophers to make (formal) arguments like the one above, thanks to the progress in computer science, a simple personal computer can now automatically infer that the last sentence is indeed a consequence of the first two.

KRR is concerned with a broad variety of tasks. FO is only one of the many languages to represent knowledge in- and deduction, which is the kind of reasoning used above. Also, it is only one of many reasoning methods that are studied. Some topics of interest of the KRR team of the AI lab include:

  • defining knowledge representation languages suitable for expressing certain types of knowledge;
  • studying relationships between different languages;
  • defining inference methods (generic methods that allow exploiting the knowledge in a certain way);
  • developing efficient algorithms for knowledge-based inference;
  • studying the relationship between knowledge representation and database theory.

The Professors and Researchers of the AI Lab involved with KRR are:

Related projects:

  • Distributed Data Intelligence (D²AI) (sub-project of Flanders AI)