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2014-04-14
For PhilPapers to survive and thrive, it needs financial support.  In five years, PhilPapers has grown from a side project into the most widely used bibliographical resource in the field.  During this time, many changes have taken place.  David Bourget, the architect of PhilPapers, now has a tenure-track appointment with teaching, research, and service duties in addition to PhilPapers. We need technical staff that can assume David's many roles, from server maintenance and administrative support to application programming and user interface design. A whole team is needed for PhilPapers to thrive and develop to its full potential.

We have considered many different financial models, including asking for donations and requiring subscriptions.  After much consultation, it has become clear to us that the best way forward is a model involving annual subscriptions for large institutions.

Starting June 1, 2014, we ask large institutions (especially universities) to pay an annual subscription fee for ... (read more)

2014-04-07

In the effort to understand the Williams-Parfit dispute regarding internal and external reasons, I have found it useful to distinguish between pre-choice and post-choice normativity.  The literature being voluminous, it is not clear to me whether this or a similar distinction has already been drawn somewhere.  I'd much appreciate any feedback in that and indeed any other regard.

Deliberation is a process culminating (in normal circumstances) in choice, e.g. to do A rather than not.  For simplicity, assume cases in which an individual is practically able, i.e. there is no slip betwixt cup and lip, in which the individual does what he/she chooses, viz. A (what Parfit calls being "fully practically rational").  So the sequence is:  deliberation, choice, action.

A "reason", it seems plausible to suppose, is something that plays some significant role in deliberation.  Insofar as we are concerned with understanding happenings in the world, we are interested in persons’ actions.  ... (read more)
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/8140 Reply

2014-04-07
(From Author) Sadly enough, this article has badly edited parts. Although I asked Editor to correct them many times, it seems that he did not have enough time to do that. I would like to apologize to readers for that.Editor, who sent me a letter afterwards, said as follows:

September 10, 2012

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN

This is to apologize for the typographical errors in the article published by Yusuke Kaneko in our journal, 
the International Journal of Arts and Sciences.
The mistakes were few but they were committed at the printing phase and should not be held against Dr. Kaneko.
We profusely apologize to Dr. Kaneko about the above.

Sincerely,

Mark Bridge
Conferences Department

2014-03-31
It seems odd to me that there is no refereeing of submitted articles. Amateurs cannot easily post on forums yet seem to be able to submit essays to the archive without any quality checks. Is this the case, or did I miss something?

If so, this does not seem the correct way around. It should surely be more difficult to archive an article here than post a message in the forums.

I mention this because the other day I referred someone to an article on philpapers during a discussion, thinking that this connection would lend the article some credibility, only to be told that any old fool could archive stuff here. I found that I wasn't able to deny this assertion.

What should I have said in response? 

   


2014-03-25
After clicking "Submit" i see the window:

Processing bibliography ..

Initializing ..

and i can't go any further.

This happens even with the .bib files that were succesfully uploaded before (half a year ago).


2014-03-20
Abstract:

This article points out: “The combination of men and women in families is irrational.” Men and women are two different “species.” They only require sexual activities from each other, which are considered the less time-consuming activities during their lives. Sex must be treated as an enemy of marriage, due to its inferior and treacherous nature, and should not be included in marriage. Men and women should not live together in a family, since this institution must be understood as a permanent place for all family members and is expected to have a solid structure. The traditional family model is the result of men‟s enslavement of women and the exaggeration of the role of sex. This model creates an overwhelming advantage for men in selecting partners, proposing marriage, and other family activities. This article indicates: (i) The prominent family models existing between the group-marriage period and now are sex-based family models. (ii) Technical and social conditions nowadays r ... (read more)

2014-03-10
The PhilPapers category system now contains comprehensive bibliographies for a large number of areas of philosophy.  We now have 450 subject editors editing 1357 bibliographies (a comprehensive list is here).  Over the last year or so we have introduced a number of features to make the bibliography system more effective.

First, bibliographies are now supplemented with a summary of the key themes and issues involved, a list of key works, and a list of introductory works, compiled by the editor for that category.  For now, about 600 categories (listed here) have these summaries. Eventually, all categories will have them.

Second, we have introduced topical subcategories for categories on historical figures, linked to the PhilPapers subject categories wherever possible.  For example "Kant: Perception" is a subcategory of Kant and is also listed under Perception.  A number of historical figures now have a detailed subcategory system: notably Aristotle, Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Kant, H ... (read more)

2014-03-02
How could I unlink the (mistakenly entered, since deleted) reference to the collection in which a paper appears in? See http://philpapers.org/rec/LIAEAA . Thanks.

2014-02-23
A very popular text book, Sensation and Perception by Goldstein, states the following:
"Light reflected from objects in the environment enters the eye through the pupil and is focused by the cornea and lens to form sharp images of the objects on the retina."
This is a common view that I have found explicitly expressed in any book or article I have read on vision.
The assumption of a retinal image poses at least two problems:
1) 2D array vs 3D world. How come we see objects in 3D while the retinal image is 2D?
2) The Inverse Problem: different objects have the same projection on the retina, but still we have no difficulty distinguishing between them.
I would like to add a third one. The retinal blind spot.
The explanations I have found have me baffled. The ingenious tests by Ramachandran and others, that purport to prove the existence of the blind spot, only add to my confusion. I have tried to find an answer to a similar problem, Tunnel Vision (Retinitis Pigmentosa), but I did not get any far ... (read more)
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/8097 Reply

2014-02-07
I have recently been discussing various interpretations of the Knobe effect with a friend of mine and we have been struck by the fact that all of the vignettes used in the empirical studies we have seen present subjects with conversations (or at least someone saying something to an audience, which may be the speaker herself, as in Knobe's terrorist case: http://pantheon.yale.edu/~jk762/ResponseCritics.pdf ).

We are trying to find empirical studies that have used vignettes that *don't* do this, but which instead simply describe the mental states and decision of an agent. Does anyone know if such studies have been carried out? I would be grateful for pointers, thanks.

2014-02-10

Philosophy of Time

The nature of time has had extensive attention in part down through the ages, such as Plato, St. Augustine, Pascal, Leonardo, Newton etc. For example, Newton considered time to flow uniformly, as if it were a separate manifold (1-surface) from the 3-surface of his mechanics described universe.

‘Absolute, true, and mathematical time, of itself, and from its own nature, flows equably without relation to anything external…’  Newton’s Principia

For a 3-manifold, this would give a product space description M^3 x M^1, the simplest fiber bundle description. Hence such description would be universal; that is the same common time for throughout the universe. Subsequently, the relativistic model refers to time as the interval between events, wherein clocks are associated with respective observers. However an event such as the Big Bang, and concomitant Big Expansion of our manifold (i.e. 3-surface), does not have such a General Relativistic Theory description; nor is ‘initial’ 3-ex ... (read more)


2014-02-10
    The general (perhaps only the Western) view is that there is little to no contribution to ancient political thought from Asia. In recent scholarships, Indian and Chinese scholars have argued that Kautilya's Arthashastra (some include Manu’s Laws) and Confucius' Analects have much to contribute to ancient political thought and even contemporary relevance, and have reconstructed them so.

    Besides Confucianism and Hinduism, does Buddhism or the Buddha have anything to say about socio-political organization? Some have asserted that the Buddha was a political realist, i.e. even though he favored some kind of a tribal democratic republic (as shown in how the sangha is structured), a colossal socio-political transformation was taking place in Northern India during his time, where powerful monarchical systems were emerging, and the Buddha made his attempts to influence its development in a certain direction (The Pali Canon, Digha Nikaya presents some evidences to this).

     ... (read more)

Latest replies:
  • Peter Jones, 2014-03-23 : My understanding is that the Buddha would not have exclusively endorsed any particular political system, since a system... (read more)
Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/8087 Reply

2014-01-17
Hi,The abstract of my paper from Philosophy, as it appears on the PhilPapers site, is missing words (so it makes no sense). I've tried to fix it myself but I always get an error message: 'some mandatory information is missing.' I can't find anything missing. How can I fix this? Thanks
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/8082 Reply

2013-12-21
Are any of you aware of any attempt by a contemporary professional philosopher to articulate a practical and self-contained "philosophy of life", akin to those of the ancient Greek philosophical schools?  
To give you an idea of that for which I am searching, please see my own attempt at the following link:

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0Byh6JnTg3RMecHhxV0pYeklqV0U/edit?usp=sharing



In the interest of full disclosure, please note that I am self-taught in philosophy (if it is not already obvious from a cursory review of my document).

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Latest replies:
  • Kevin Harris, 2014-03-23 : Though I do not personally agree with several of your philosophical positions I am willing to accept them as premises in... (read more)
  • Philo Sofer, 2014-03-31 : Kevin, thank you for reading and comme I agree that substantial benefits may accrue from holding philosophical positions... (read more)
Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/8002 Reply

2013-12-10
Sometimes the maintenance bot appears to be overaggressive in pruning the records. For example, I just noticed that an overview that I co-authored with Tamar Gendler
http://philpapers.org/rec/LIATPO

has been changed to have the same details as Gendler's 2000 imaginative resistance paper.

---

A related problem is that there is no easy way for me to reverse the changes except redoing everything manually. Wikis have an option to reverse edits. It would be nice if the same option existed on the Revisions History page.

---

Thanks!
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7998 Reply

2013-12-21
Essentially, we'll never truly be able to distinguish between "right" and "wrong" actions. At any given time in history, however, philosophers, theologians, and politicians will claim to have discovered the best way to evaluate human actions and establish the most righteous code of conduct. But it's never that easy. Life is far too messy and complicated for there to be anything like a universal morality or an absolutist ethics. The Golden Rule is great (the idea that you should treat others as you would like them to treat you),
For example, should the few be spared to save the many? Who has more moral worth: a human baby or a full-grown great ape? 

At best, we can only say that morality is normative, while acknowledging that our sense of right and wrong will change over time.

Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7960 Reply

2013-11-19
Here is an argument against reliabilism. Grateful for comments. Also, is this argument already out there? Wouldn’t be surprised. The argument proceeds in two parts. Here’s part A, an analogy.

1. Suppose I’m imprisoned permanently in a windowless prison cell. However there is a large TV screen. My jailer tells me it shows, by cameras that focus on various events in the world outside, what is really happening.

2. As my life continues I believe that the events on the screen are accurate, but naturally I have doubts–maybe I’m being shown old reruns or computer generated confabulations or...– and I wonder if what I’m seeing is really going on. Sometimes images appear on the screen of how the system itself works–the cameras, their construction, the lens, examples of them capturing events in the world, the way the images are relayed accurately to the screen in my cell...I believe these are accurate but it’s hardly unreasonable to continue to wonder whether what I’m seeing is really going on–th ... (read more)
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7941 Reply

2013-11-12

I am unsure if this is the correct forum for this. Kant is famous for asking what the conditions are for the possibility of knowledge in the Critique of Pure Reason. I  think that his answers are more right than not.

    How can we apply this question to the phenomenology of Sartre or Heidegger? That is, what, are the conditions for knowledge, if any, for some of the claims in Being and Time and Being and Nothingness. I refer to the assertions about Being, Dasein, Nothingness, authenticity and the terminology therein. I realize that this is a huge and difficult question that is worthy of a book. My reason for asking is to challenge the entire projects of these texts. Their conclusions, after all, are not empirical and little or no evidence is given because that is not the intention, except with Husserl, arguably. Their claims are speculative and perhaps fallacious.
. Would you consider their assertions non-propositional in that no definite truth or falsity can be known? I think Ayer would a ... (read more)
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7933 Reply

2013-11-02
Hello, I have written a 'Short introduction to open access in philosophy' where I urge philosophers not to upload their articles to their homepage but to use PhilPapers. There is a longer text on this at open-access.net. I also make suggestions about open access for books. Comments and suggestions welcome.
Daniel von Wachter
Latest replies: Permanent link: http://philpapers.org/post/7927 Reply

2013-10-03
This way of sifting through material to categorize via David Bourget is very helpful:

Go to "Material to Categorize" for your category, or just go to the category directly. In the "search inside" box, use a query like this:

@source "journal of philosophy" or use keywords like "neuroethics"

This will show you all the contents under this category that have this source. To see the material to categorize, order the results by category. The material to categorize will be at the top of the
listing. To see the categorization shortcuts, enable this option in the options on the right.

Using this search method can allow you to go through and categorize everything in one area of philosophy or from one journal at a time. Anyway, I found this very useful - hope it helps other editors (especially if you are dealing with a big back-log)

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