In 1986 IBM Germany started as a large-scale cooperation with German universities, the LILOG project ("Linguistic and LOGic methods and tools"). WSV was member of LILOG as sub-contractor investigating the field Spatial Knowledge.
The topic of LILOG-Raum was the representation and processing of spatial knowledge enabling a cognitively adequate meaning analysis of spatial expressions of German. It was our aim to make a contribution to cognitive science by taking into account methods and results of cognitive linguistics and cognitive psychology and by striving for a cognitively adequate formal theory of spatial knowledge to be integrated in the LILOG-prototype (LEU/2 1990/91).
The lexical classes under investigation within our theoretical framework were local and directional prepositions, verbs of motion and position, and dimensional adjectives. These categories were analyzed with respect to their syntactic, semantic, and conceptual properties. To ensure an adequate treatment of the flexibility of natural language expressions, we assumed a model of meaning representation consisting of two levels, a semantic and a conceptual level.
One of the core purposes of the conceptual level were to provide the language-independent fundamental concepts that spatial knowledge are based on. To guarantee an appropriate representation and processing of spatial concepts, we proposed the conceptual level as consisting of a propositional as well as a non-propositional component, yielding a hybrid multimodal representation system. The non-propositional depictional component is concerned with pictorial, sketch-like representations of spatial knowledge.