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Following is partial content of e-mails from/to Robert Jenders in regards to assignment of Arden Syntax to a Steering Division (and the fact that it was not assigned to any!!

Original Inquiry from Jenders

Hi, Karen.

I hope that this note finds you well. Presumably the snow in Michigan has melted by this point in the season.... :-)

Re the nomination/election process to choose steering division cochairs (who, I also understand, serve as the division's representatives on the new TSC): The explanatory memo issued on 4 June over the names of J Quinn and W Beeler states that each TC and SIG is a "constituent body" of a steering division and that each such body has one vote in the "functional committee" that is the new division. However, the unsigned memo issued the same day that explains the nomination and election procedure does not include the Arden Syntax SIG in any of the divisions. Presumably this is an oversight, because the other SIG of our CDS TC--the Clinical Guidelines SIG--is listed, albeit in a division different from the TC itself.

Would you rectify this oversight? Consistency presumably would demand that the Arden Syntax SIG be listed in the Domain Experts Steering Division along with the Clinical Guidelines SIG. Please let us know the outcome of this so that we may do the right thing when it comes to nominating steering division cochairs. Indeed, to help us in this process, our TC has formed a task force that will search inpatient psychiatric facilities in several cities for candidates who, suitably medicated, might assume this awesome burden.... :-)


Reply van Hentenryck to Jenders

Hello Robert:

I was traveling Friday afternoon and thus my delay in responding. Yes, this is clearly an oversight. The Arden Syntax SIG was included in the Structure & Semantic Design grouping for the T3F elections and it appears that it was some how omitted from the list when the T3F drafted their materials for this election.

I am copying Linda and Mike on this e-mail to ensure that this update is applied to the documentation and to the materials on the web site. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Follow-up from Jenders to van Hentenryck

Thanks for your note.

What was the rationale for including the Arden Syntax SIG in the Structure & Semantic Design steering division but the CDS TC's other SIG, Clinical Guidelines, in the Domain Experts steering division? Perhaps Dr Co-Chair Parker, who {was | is} involved with the T3F, knows why this is so. In effect, the domain for the Arden SIG--a formalism for medical knowledge representation--is much the same as the Clinical Guidelines SIG, although Arden focuses specifically on an extant standard for this. Under this reasoning, then, wouldn't the two SIGs be in the same place? Or if a guiding principle was to put all the SIGs of a TCs in the same division as the parent TC, why are the CDS TC and Clinical Guidelines SIG in separate divisions? Admittedly, my sense of the project is that we're moving away from formal parent-child relationships when it comes to TCs and SIGs.

Thanks again,

From Beeler to Jenders:

Robert (et al) -

As Karen noted, this was a simple oversight. Truth be known, since I processed the whole Committee/SIG list while finalizing the T3F recommendations, the oversight was mine.

Karen's reply as to where Arden Syntax was in the October 2006 T3F elections is correct. It should be noted that several SIGs (indeed most) are in divisions different from their parent TCs. Although this has been questioned before, the T3F noted that the "rationale" for assigning groups to Steering Divisions must of needs be imprecise as the actual work done by different groups rarely fits an a priori definition. Therefore, the T3F made only a few changes in the previous assignments.

In my view, Arden Syntax might better fit under yet a third Steering Division -- Foundation & Technologies -- since it forms a "fundamental tool or building block" that others use to communicate knowledge. In this sense it is akin to an ITS or other specification for capturing or encoding information.

In ANY EVENT, I will ask the T3F to discuss the proper assignment of Arden Syntax SIG during today's (June 26) conference call, and respond as soon as the call is complete.

Yours .... Woody Beeler