In this paper we describe the nature and problems of business and define one aspect of the business environment. We then propose a framework based on augmented soft systems methodology and object technology that captures both the soft and hard aspects of a business environment within the context of organisational culture. We also briefly discuss cognitive informatics and its relevance to understanding problems and solutions. Pólya's work, which is based around solving mathematical problems, is considered within the context of information (...) systems development. We propose a generic reusable business object model based on general systems theory. We also show how these approaches can be integrated to provide a strategy for understanding business problems and developing integrated solutions. (shrink)
Perceptual grouping has traditionally been thought to be governed by innate, universal principles. However, recent work has found differences in Japanese and English speakers' non-linguistic perceptual grouping, implicating language in non-linguistic perceptual processes (Iversen, Patel, & Ohgushi, 2008). Two experiments test Japanese- and English-learning infants of 5-6 and 7-8 months of age to explore the development of grouping preferences. At 5-6 months, neither the Japanese nor the English infants revealed any systematic perceptual biases. However, by 7-8 months, the same (...) age as when linguistic phrasal grouping develops, infants developed non-linguistic grouping preferences consistent with their language's structure (and the grouping biases found in adulthood). These results reveal an early difference in non-linguistic perception between infants growing up in different language environments. The possibility that infants' linguistic phrasal grouping is bootstrapped by abstract perceptual principles is discussed. (shrink)
In this conceptual article, we look at the impact of culture on ethical decision making from a Douglasian Cultural Theory (CT) perspective. We aim to show how CT can be used to explain the diversity and dynamicity of ethical beliefs and behaviours found in every social system, be it a corporation, a nation or even an individual. We introduce CT in the context of ethical decision making and then use it to discuss examples of business ethics in the Indian business (...) context. We argue that the use of CT allows for a theoretically more sophisticated treatment of culture in ethical decision making and thus the avoidance of some common problems with existing cross-cultural studies of business ethics. In our discussion, we raise questions about the compatibility between management systems and processes created in one context and ethical behaviours in another. (shrink)
A deficit in the number of organs available for transplantation persists even with an increase in donation rates. One possible choice of donor for organs that appears under-referred and/or unaccepted is patients with primary brain tumours. In spite of advances in the treatment of high-grade primary central nervous system (CNS) tumours, the prognosis remains dire. A working group on organs from donors with primary CNS tumours showed that the risk of transmission is small and outweighs the benefits of waiting for (...) a normal donor, in survival and organ life-years, with caveats. This paper explores the possibility that, if information on organ donation were made available to patients and their families with knowledge of their inevitable fate, perhaps some will choose to donate. It would be explained that to achieve this, elective ventilation would be performed in their final moments. This would obviate the consent question because of an advance statement. It is accepted that these are sensitive matters and there will be logistic issues. This will need discussion with the public and other professionals, but it could increase the number of donors and can be extrapolated to encompass other primary CNS tumours. (shrink)
Concept formation is complex cognitive phenomenon which has been only partially modelIed in Cognitive Psychology and AI. Following a detailed and critical evaluation of such models we conclude that their main shortcoming of not being able to explain the nature of the semantics of concepts is because they fail to take into account the role of learning in concept formation. As a radical alternative it is proposed that a more (semantically) complete model would necessarily have to give an account of (...) how concepts are formed as a result of agent-environment interaction, that is mediated by an agents action in its environment and feedback from it. Such a shift in focus renders the investigation of the nature of concept formation as a complex and dynamic adaptive system. In accordance with this shift in perspective we propose and describe a novel methodological approach and a computational model that would support simple concept formation in an autonomous agent, which enables us to investigate concept formation in a more comprehensive manner. Overall we provide a compelling justification of the efficacy of such an ecological approach to the study of concept formation. (shrink)
Abstract This essay discusses the paradox of the N?g?rjunian negation as presented in his Vigrahavy?vartani. In Part One it is argued that as the Naiy?yika remarks, N?g?rjuna's speech act ?No proposition has its own intrinsic thesis? seemingly contradicts his famous claim that he has no negation whatsoever. In Parts Two and Three I consider the traditional as well as modem responses to this paradox and offer my own. I argue that N?g?rjuna's speech act does not generate a paradox for two (...) reasons: (a) the equivalence thesis of the kind??P = ?P is obviously false; and (b) since N?g?rjuna's speech act is situated in the dialogical/conversational universe of discourse as opposed to the argumentative/systematic universe of discourse, the teaching of the non?intrinsic thesis of all statements that it purports, holds for all statements in its class, including itself. Lastly, it is argued that even though the N?g?rjunian speech act is not a negation situated in the argumentative universe of discourse, it serves both philosophical and soteriological purposes. (shrink)
The insights of descriptive decision theorists and psychologists, we believe, have much to contribute to our understanding of financial market macrophenomena. We propose an analytic agenda that distinguishes those individual idiosyncrasies that prove consequential at the macro-level from those that are neutralized by market processes such as poaching. We discuss five behavioral traits — barn-door closing, expert/reliance effects, status quo bias, framing, and herding — that we employ in explaining financial flows. Patterns in flows to mutual funds, to new equities, (...) across national boundaries, as well as movements in debt-equity ratios are shown to be consistent with deviations from rationality. (shrink)
High-resolution neuroimaging modalities are used often in studies involving healthy volunteers. Subsequently, a significant increase in the incidental discovery of asymptomatic intracranial abnormalities raised the important ethical issues of when follow-up and treatment may be necessary. We examined the literature to establish a practical set of criteria for approaching incidental findings. Our objective is to develop an algorithm for when follow-up may be important and to provide recommendations that would increase the likelihood of follow-up. A systematic literature search was performed (...) using the PubMed and MEDLINE databases to identify articles describing brain tumors and intracranial aneurysms. The treatment algorithm we present suggests that incidental intracranial masses suspicious for glioma should be biopsied or resected, while other masses are to be followed with serial imaging based on the expected growth pattern. Lack of follow-up can result in adverse outcomes that can be mitigated by using technology to facilitate communication and improve follow-up care. The importance of training physicians to be good communicators is also stressed. New technology including automated telephone systems, texting and email will improve access to patients and hopefully encourage compliance and follow-up. (shrink)
Growing evidence suggests mothers invest more in girls than boys and fathers more in boys than girls. We develop a hypothesis that predicts preference for girls by the parent facing more resource constraints and preference for boys by the parent facing less constraint. We test the hypothesis with panel data from the Tsimane’, a foraging-farming society in the Bolivian Amazon. Tsimane’ mothers face more resource constraints than fathers. As predicted, mother’s wealth protected girl’s BMI, but father’s wealth had weak effects (...) on boy’s BMI. Numerous tests yielded robust results, including those that controlled for fixed effects of child and household. (shrink)
The conceptual foundations underpinning the approach to system requirements gathering considered in this paper aredeferred system's design andtailorable information systems. In this approach users of information systems are regarded as active developers. System requirements gathering is considered from an interpretative and situated perspective using the Hyper-Tmodeller CASE tool. The tool enables better interpretative and situated system requirements gathering, through visual modelling by users and professional system developers. It is designed to address the requirements communication gap between system analysts, designers and (...) eventual users. (shrink)
The discourse of multiculturalism provides a useful means of understanding the complexities, tensions, and dilemmas that Asian and other minority women in the U.K. grapple with in their quest for human rights. However, the adoption of multiculturalist approaches has also silenced women’s voices, obscuring, for example, the role of the family in gendered violence and abuse. Focusing on the work of Southall Black Sisters, and locating this work within current debates on the intersection of government policy, cultural diversity, and feminist (...) activism, this article examines, and critiques, the Labour government’s current “multi-faith” agenda for its impact on Black and minority ethnic women in the U.K. (shrink)
Some have referred to relatively recent forms of popular Buddhism as an ?engaged? Buddhism that has revived or redirected traditional Buddhist ideas and practices found in meditation texts to reflect a greater social or worldly emphasis than suggested in earlier historical moments. One of these ideas is the quadripartite framework of the ?immeasurable states? (aprameya/appameya) or ?divine abidings? (brahmavih?ra), the most prominent of which in popular Buddhism is mett? (friendliness/loving-kindness). This article traces the philosophy of the ?immeasurable states? found in (...) meditation texts from various Indic traditions (Buddhist, Jain, and Hindu) and then presents the ways in which these traditional ideas (especially mett?) have informed popular Buddhist movements in the twentieth century. Points of discussion include: ?engaged? Buddhism's relationship with traditional Buddhist ethics; arguments concerning the coalescence of monastic-centred meditation practices with popular Buddhist notions of social service; and the distinct utilization of mett? in contemporary Buddhist societies in contrast to the mobilizing impulses of comparable religious communities (Hindu and Jain) with a similar heritage of mett? discourse in South Asia. (shrink)
Real life applications and case studies -- Commmunication and computing systems -- Mobile and ubiquitous computing -- Electrical and electronics systems -- Green computing and e-waste minimizations -- Image processing and applications -- Material science & technology -- Wired and wireless networks.
Accurately timing acoustic events in dynamic scenes is fundamental to scene analysis. To detect events in busy scenes, listeners must often identify a change in the pattern of ongoing fluctuation, resulting in many ubiquitous events being detected later than when they occurred. This raises the question of how delayed detection time affects the manner in which such events are perceived relative to other events in the environment. To model these situations, we use sequences of tone-pips with a time-frequency pattern that (...) changes from regular to random ('REG-RAND') or vice versa ('RAND-REG'). REG-RAND transitions are detected rapidly, but the emergence of regularity cannot be established immediately, and thus RAND-REG transitions take significantly longer to detect. Using a temporal order judgment task, and a light-flash as a temporal marker, we demonstrate that listeners do not perceive the onset of RAND-REG transitions at the point of detection (∼530 ms post transition), but automatically re-adjust their estimate ∼300 ms closer to the nominal transition. These results demonstrate that the auditory system possesses mechanisms that survey the proximal history of an ongoing stimulus and automatically adjust perception to compensate for prolonged detection time, allowing listeners to build meaningful representations of the environment. (shrink)
This paper brings kāmaśāstra into conversation with poetics (alaṅkāraśāstra) and modes of literary criticism associated with Sanskrit literature (kāvya). It shows how historical intersections between kāvya, kāmaśāstra, and alaṅkāraśāstra have produced insightful cross-domain typologies to understand the nature and value of canonical works of Sanskrit literature. In addition to exploring kāmaśāstra typologies broadly as conceptual models and analytical categories useful in literary-critical contexts, this paper takes up a specific formulation from the kāmaśāstra (the padminī-citriṇī-śaṅkhinī-hastinī type-casting of females) used by a (...) twentieth century literary critic to frame the relationships between canonical poets of Sanskrit literature. (shrink)
This essay explores the notion of female embodiment and its relation to the phenomenon of religion. It explains religious beliefs, acts, and events in terms of the worship of the female body. By elucidating this standpoint, this essay hopes to reclaim the centrality of the female body and its importance in the study of philosophy of religion.