David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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This paper is part of a series in which we had worked in the last 6 months, and, specifically, intend to investigate the notion of timbre through the ecological perspective proposed by James Gibson in his Theory of Direct Perception. First of all, we discussed the traditional approach to timbre, mainly as developed in acoustics and psychoacoustics. Later, we proposed a new conception of timbre that was born in concepts of ecological approach. The ecological approach to perception proposed by Gibson (1966, 1979) presupposes a level of analysis of perceptual stimulated that includes, but is quite broader than the usual physical aspect. Gibson suggests as focus the relationship between the perceiver and his environment. At the core of this approach, is the notion of affordances, invariant combinations of properties at the ecological level, taken with reference to the anatomy and action systems of species or individual, and also with reference to its biological and social needs. Objects and events are understood as relates to a perceiving organism by the meaning of structured information, thus affording possibilities of action by the organism. Event perception aims at identifying properties of events to specify changes of the environment that are relevant to the organism. The perception of form is understood as a special instance of event perception, which is the identity of an object depends on the nature of the events in which is involved and what remains invariant over time. From this perspective, perception is not in any sense created by the brain, but is a part of the world where information can be found. Consequently, an ecological approach represents a form of direct realism that opposes the indirect realist based on predominant approaches to perception borrowed from psychoacoustics and computational approach.
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