In a thought experiment we want to test how the emergence of adult neural stem cells could constitute an example for a scientific revolution in the sense of Thomas Kuhn. In his major work, The structure of scientific revolutions, 3rd edn, University of Chicago Press, Chicago (Kuhn 1996), the philosopher of science, Thomas Kuhn, states that scientific progress is not a cumulative process, but new theories appear by a rather revolutionary sequence of events. Kuhn built his theory on landmark events (...) taken from chemistry and physics, lacking examples from biology. Beginning with Ramon y Cajalâs famous quote, no new neurons after birth , from the early years of the twentieth century, and Reynolds and Weissâs conflicting finding in 1992 of adult neural stem cells giving rise to new neurons, we will test how the finding of neural stem cells in the adult brain matches with Kuhnâs theory. The pivotal problem of defining a paradigm will be our main focus, since the emergence of adult neural stem cells has been acclaimed by the scientific community as the rebuttal of Ramon y Cajalâs paradigm. (shrink)
Husserl holds the view that givenness through adumbrations (i.e. perspectival givenness) is an essential characteristic of the givenness of spatiotemporal things. He goes so far to say that we are dealing with an essential law. In this article I try to make sense of this claim. I am also dealing with a thought experiment that is designed to show that the givenness through adumbrations is just a consequence of our physiological make-up, a view that Husserl explicitly rejects. Amongst other things, (...) I defend Husserl by introducing the crucial distinction between first-person-imagination and third-person-imagination. (shrink)
This article is an investigation of parallel themes in Heinrich Hertz's philosophy science and Kant's theory of schemata, symbols and regulative ideas. It is argued that Hertz's "pictures" bears close similarities to Kantian "schemata", that is, they are rules linking concepts to intuitions and provide them with their meaning. Kant's distinction between symbols and schemata is discussed and related to Hertz's three pictures of mechanics. It is argued that Hertz considered his own picture of mechanics (the "hidden mass" picture) as (...) symbolic in a different way than the force and energy pictures. In the final part of the article it is described how Harald Høffding soon after the publication of Hertz's Principles of Mechanics developed a general theory of analogical reasoning, relying on the ideas of Hertz and Kant. (shrink)
In the summer of 1941, Harald Sverdrup, the Norwegian-born Director of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) in La Jolla, California, was denied security clearance to work on Navy-sponsored research in underwater acoustics applied to anti-submarine warfare. The clearance denial embarrassed the world renown oceanographer and Arctic explorer, who repeatedly offered his services to the U.S. government only to see scientists of far lesser reputation called upon to aid the war effort. The official story of Sverdrup's denial was the (...) risk of blackmail over relatives in occupied Norway. Declassified documents tell a different story. Although Sverdrup's integrity was defended on the highest levels of U.S. science, doubt was cast upon him by members of his own institution, who accused him of being a Nazi sympathiser. Personal distrust, rooted in scientific and intellectual disagreement, spilled over into questions about Sverdrup's loyalty and judgement. These doubts were considered sufficient grounds for withholding clearance, until Roger Revelle, a former student of Sverdrup now working within the Navy, was able to obtain a limited clearance for Sverdrup to develop techniques to forecast surf conditions during amphibious assaults. After the war, this work was credited with saving many lives, but at the time it placed Sverdrup out of the mainstream of Navy-sponsored oceanographic research. In being denied access to major areas of scientific work, Sverdrup's position as a leader of American oceanography was undermined.The loyalty case of Harald Sverdrup illustrates the emergence of an institutional apparatus through which the U.S. military began to control and shape the organisation of American science in the twentieth century. Military sponsorship of scientific research, begun during the open conflicts of World War II and continuing into the simmering tensions of the Cold War, involved explicit control by the U.S. military of who had access to critical information. This in turn meant who could do science in conjunction with the military. As the U.S. Navy became the principal sponsor of oceanography in the post-war years, clearance to do military work became to a great extent clearance to do oceanography. Choices about who could be trusted were also choices about who would do science, and what kind of science they would do. (shrink)
Review of Harald Wohlrapp’s “Der Begriff des Arguments” Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-8 DOI 10.1007/s10503-012-9268-5 Authors Michael J. Hoppmann, Northeastern University, Boston, MA, USA Journal Argumentation Online ISSN 1572-8374 Print ISSN 0920-427X.
H. Baayen (désormais HB) a publié récemment, généralement en partenariat, de nombreux articles importants en statistique linguistique, sur la notion de productivité morphologique tout particulièrement [Baayen et al., 2000 ; Baayen & Schreuder, 2000] L'ouvrage de synthèse qu'il présente est une étude statistique approfondie des distributions des fréquences des mots. A travers ce sujet clairement affiché dans le titre mais à première vue rebattu, HB semble, au moins pour les distributions des m..
It is widely accepted that consciousness or, in other words, mental activity is in some way correlated to the behavior of the brain or, in other words, material brain activity. Since quantum theory is the most fundamental theory of matter that is currently available, it is a legitimate question to ask whether quantum theory can help us to understand consciousness. Several approaches answering this question a?rmatively, proposed in recent decades, will be surveyed. It will be pointed out that they make (...) di?erent epistemological assumptions, refer to di?erent neurophysiological levels of description, and adopt quantum theory in di?erent ways. For each of the approaches discussed, these imply both.. (shrink)
Wolfgang Pauli (1900-1958) was one of the greatest physicists of the past century. He played a leading role in the development of modern physics and was known for his ruthless intellectual integrity. Pauli first became famed through the publication of his encyclopaedia article on the theory of relativity (Pauli, 1921) when he was still a student of Sommerfeld's. Einstein much admired this article, which remained a classic.