Taken at face value, a programming language is defined by a formal grammar. But, clearly, there is more to it. By themselves, the naked strings of the language do not determine when a program is correct relative to some specification. For this, the constructs of the language must be given some semantic content. Moreover, to be employed to generate physical computations, a programming language must have a physical implementation. How are we to conceptualize this complex package? Ontologically, what kind of (...) thing is it? In this paper, we shall argue that an appropriate conceptualization is furnished by the notion of a technical artifact. (shrink)
This fMRI study examines shared and distinct cortical areas involved in the auditory perception of song and speech at the level of their underlying constituents: words, pitch and rhythm. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed on the brain activity patterns of six conditions, arranged in a subtractive hierarchy: sung sentences including words, pitch and rhythm; hummed speech prosody and song melody containing only pitch patterns and rhythm; as well as the pure musical or speech rhythm. Systematic contrasts between these balanced (...) conditions following their hierarchical organization showed a great overlap between song and speech at all levels in the bilateral temporal lobe, but suggested a differential role of the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and intraparietal sulcus (IPS) in processing song and speech. The left IFG was involved in word- and pitch-related processing in speech, the right IFG in processing pitch in song. Furthermore, the IPS showed sensitivity to discrete pitch relations in song as opposed to the gliding pitch in speech. Finally, the superior temporal gyrus and premotor cortex coded for general differences between words and pitch patterns, irrespective of whether they were sung or spoken. Thus, song and speech share many features which are reflected in a fundamental similarity of brain areas involved in their perception. However, fine-grained acoustic differences on word and pitch level are reflected in the activity of IFG and IPS. (shrink)
The specification and implementation of computational artefacts occurs throughout the discipline of computer science. Consequently, unpacking its nature should constitute one of the core areas of the philosophy of computer science. This paper presents a conceptual analysis of the central role of specification in the discipline.
By the term nominalization I mean any process which transforms a predicate or predicate phrase into a noun or noun phrase, e.g. feminine is transformed into feminity. I call these derivative nouns abstract singular terms. Our aim is to provide a model-theoretic interpretation for a formal language which admits the occurrence of such abstract singular terms.