Information management systems improve the retention of information in large collections. As such they act as memory prostheses, implying an ideal basis in human memory models. Since humans process information by association, and situate it in the context of space and time, systems should maximize their effectiveness by mimicking these functions. Since human attentional capacity is limited, systems should scaffold cognitive efforts in a comprehensible manner. We propose the Principles of Mnemonic Associative Knowledge (P-MAK), which describes a framework for semantically (...) identifying, organizing, and retrieving information, and for encoding episodic events by time and stimuli. Inspired by prominent human memory models, we propose associative networks as a preferred representation. Networks are ideal for their parsimony, flexibility, and ease of inspection. Networks also possess topological properties—such as clusters, hubs, and the small world—that aid analysis and navigation in an information space. Our cognitive perspective addresses fundamental problems faced by information management systems, in particular the retrieval of related items and the representation of context. We present evidence from neuroscience and memory research in support of this approach, and discuss the implications of systems design within the constraints of P-MAK’s principles, using text documents as an illustrative semantic domain. (shrink)
This book constitutes the refereed proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Theory and Applications of Satisfiability Testing, SAT 2004, held in Vancouver, BC, Canada in May 2004. The 24 revised full papers presented together with 2 invited papers were carefully selected from 72 submissions. In addition there are 2 reports on the 2004 SAT Solver Competition and the 2004 QBF Solver Evaluation. The whole spectrum of research in propositional and quantified Boolean formula satisfiability testing is covered; bringing together the (...) fields of theoretical and experimental computer science as well as the many relevant application areas. (shrink)
What does quantum ﬁeld theory (QFT) tell us about the furniture of the world? Seventeen essays gathered in the four parts of Ontological Aspects of Quantum Field Theory address this question from different angles and with different objectives. Together, they form a wide-ranging and up-to-date volume that makes a valuable contribution to an ongoing discussion, which, due to the comprehensive introduction by the editors, can be of interest to experts and novices alike.
Summary: This book is the first serious attempt to compare the major trends of this school of thought and to discuss their similarities and differences from a non-belligerent position… Lindemann’s book is a competent and very valuable introduction to the ideas of constructivism and their application to pedagogy.
Whether meaning is compositional has been a major issue in linguistics and formal philosophy of language for the last 2 decades. Semantic holism is widely and plausibly considered as an objection to the principle of semantic compositionality therein. It comes as a surprise that the holistic peculiarities of scientific language have been rarely addressed in formal accounts so far, given that semantic holism has its roots in the philosophy of science. For this reason, a model-theoretic approach to semantic holism in (...) the language of science is presented here. This approach preserves compositionality to a large extent. *Received September 2009; revised February 2010. †To contact the author, please write to: Seminar for Philosophy, Logic, and Theory of Science, Hauspostfach 49, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich 80539, Germany; e-mail: email@example.com. (shrink)
The German philosopher Robert Spaemann provides an important contribution to a number of contemporary debates in philosophy and theology, opening up possibilities for conversation between these disciplines. He engages in a dialogue with classical and contemporary positions and often formulates important and original insights which lie beyond common alternatives. In this study Holger Zaborowski provides an analysis of the most important features of Spaemann's philosophy and shows the unity of his thought. The question 'Who is a person?' is of (...) increasing significance: Are all human beings persons? Are there animals that can be considered persons? What does it mean to speak of personal identity and of the dignity of the person? Spaemann provides an answer to these questions: Every human being, he argues, is a person and, therefore, 'has' his nature in freedom. In order to understand the person, Spaemann explains, we have to think about the relation between nature and freedom and avoid the reductive accounts of this relation prevalent in important strands of modern thought. Spaemann develops a challenging critique of modernity, incorporating analysis of modern anti-modernisms and showing that these are also subject to a dialectical development, perpetuating the problematic shortcomings of many features of modern reasoning. If we do not want to abolish ourselves as persons, Spaemann reasons, we need to find a way of understanding ourselves that evades the dialectic of modernity. Thus, he reminds his readers of 'self-evident' knowledge: insights that we have once already known, but tend to forget. (shrink)
Recent developments under the keywords dynamicism, embodiment and situated cognition suggest the view that cognitive systems are not confined to the neural sys‐tem but leak into the world beyond the traditional system boundaries. This is the thesis of extended cognition. Such an extension of the cognitive vehicles leads to a new kind of content externalism, known as active externalism. The essay pursues three objectives: firstly, to distinguish the theses of extended cognitive and active externalism. Secondly, to delineate active externalism from (...) its various passive-externalist precursors in the form of physical, historical and social externalism and to scrutinize its special position, which amounts to a comprehensive discussion and analysis of all variants of mental externalism. And thirdly, to show that social externalism as opposed to physical and historical externalism allows for a gradual transition from passive to active mental externalism. (shrink)
Multiple Realizability (MR) must still be regarded as one of the principal arguments against type reductionist accounts of higher-order properties and their special laws. Against this I argue that there is no unique MR but rather a multitude of MR categories. In a slogan: MR is itself “multi-realized”. If this is true then we cannot expect one unique reductionist strategy against MR as an anti-reductionist argument. The main task is rather to develop a taxonomy of the wide variety of MR (...) cases and to sketch possible reductionist answers for each class of cases. The paper outlines some first steps in this direction. (shrink)
Der Aufsatz lotet den zeitgenössischen Reduktionismus aus. Im ersten Teil wird in zentrale Stationen der wissenschaftstheoretischen Debatte um Theorien-Reduktion eingeleitet, wobei das Schaffner-Hooker-Modell und die Bedeutung von Näherungsbegriffen hervorgehoben werden. Der zweite Teil behandelt die multiple Realisierbarkeit als eines der nach wie vor zentralen anti-reduktionistischen Argumente. Die Analyse soll zeigen, dass es sich hierbei nicht um ein einheitliches Phänomen handelt, sondern dass sehr verschiedene Kategorien von Multirealisierbarkeit zu unterscheiden sind. In einem vereinfachten Slogan: multiple Realisierbarkeit ist ihrerseits multirealisiert. Der Aufsatz (...) entwickelt eine rohe Taxonomie von Typen multipler Realisierbarkeit und möglicher reduktionistischer Strategien, wobei genuine Fälle von Multirealisierbarkeit auf geteilte Eigenschaften zurückgeführt werden. Im letzten Teil wird die besondere Rolle von Näherungen im Zusammenhang mit der explanatorischen Spannung zwischen ontischem Reduktionismus und epistemischen Anti-Reduktionismus verdeutlicht. (shrink)
The paper presents and discusses the “which-is-which content of handedness,” the meaning of left as left and right as right, as a possible candidate for the idea of a genuine embodied cognitive content. After showing that the Ozma barrier, the non-transferability of the meaning of left and right, provides a kind of proof of the non-descriptive, indexical nature of the which-is-which content of handedness, arguments are presented which suggest that the classical representationalist account of cognition faces a perplexing problem of (...) underdetermination of reference of left and right in the which-is-which sense. By way of contrast, no such problems occur in a framework were embodied contents are not mediated by some extra body model which carries the representational power, but are instead directly represented. (shrink)
Structural realism is sometimes said to undermine the theory underdetermination (TUD) argument against realism, since, in usual TUD scenarios, the supposed underdetermination concerns the object-like theoretical content but not the structural content. The paper explores the possibility of structural TUD by considering some special cases from modern physics, but also questions the validity of the TUD argument itself. The upshot is that cases of structural TUD cannot be excluded, but that TUD is perhaps not such a terribly serious anti-realistic argument.
An analysis of the theory of biodynamic farming is presented. The founder of biological dynamic agriculture, the Austrian Rudolf Steiner, Ph.D., (1861–1925), introduced methods of preparation and use of eight compounds forming the nucleus of his agricultural theory. His instructions were based on insights and inner visions from spiritualistic exercises and not on agricultural experiments. His purpose was to show mankind a form of agriculture that enables not only the production of healthy foods but also the achievement of harmonious interactions (...) in agriculture and a spiritual development of mankind through “cosmic forces” captured in the foods. However, many of his statements are not provable simply because scientifically clear hypotheses cannot be made as his descriptions were unclear and not stringent. Those predictions that can be tested scientifically have been found to be incorrect. It was concluded that Steiner's instructions are occult and dogmatic and cannot contribute to the development of alternative or sustainable agriculture. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is twofold: First, to present an examination of the principles underlying gauge field theories. I shall argue that there are two principles directly connected to the two well-known theorems of Emmy Noether concerning global and local symmetries of the free matter-field Lagrangian, in the following referred to as "conservation principle" and "gauge principle". Since both these express nothing but certain symmetry features of the free field theory, they are not sufficient to derive a true interaction (...) coupling to a new gauge field. For this purpose it is necessary to advocate a third, truly empirical principle which may be understood as a generalization of the equivalence principle. The second task of the paper is to deal with the ontological question concerning the reality status of gauge potentials in the light of the proposed logical structure of gauge theories. A nonlocal interpretation of topological effects in gauge theories and, thus, the non-reality of gauge potentials in accordance with the generalized equivalence principle will be favoured. (shrink)
After decades of neglect philosophers of physics have discovered gauge theories--arguably the paradigm of modern field physics--as a genuine topic for foundational and philosophical research. Incidentally, in the last couple of years interest from the philosophy of physics in structural realism--in the eyes of its proponents the best suited realist position towards modern physics--has also raised. This paper tries to connect both topics and aims to show that structural realism gains further credence from an ontological analysis of gauge theories--in particular (...) U(1) gauge theory. In the first part of the paper the framework of fiber bundle gauge theories is briefly presented and the interpretation of local gauge symmetry will be examined. In the second part, an ontological underdetermination of gauge theories is carved out by considering the various kinds of non-locality involved in such typical effects as the Aharonov-Bohm effect. The analysis shows that the peculiar form of non-separability figuring in gauge theories is a variant of spatiotemporal holism and can be distinguished from quantum theoretic holism. In the last part of the paper the arguments for a gauge theoretic support of structural realism are laid out and discussed. (shrink)
The paper is a kind of opinionated review paper on current issues in the debate about Structural Realism, roughly the view that we should be committed in the structural rather than object-like content of our best current scientific theories. The major thesis in the first part of the paper is that Structural Realism has to take structurally derived intrinsic properties into account, while in the second part key elements of aligning Structural Realism with a Humean framework are outlined.
Machine generated contents note: Notes on contributors; Introduction; Acknowledgements; Method of citation and bibliography of Heidegger's works; Part I. Interpreting Heidegger's Philosophy: 1. Heidegger's hermeneutics: towards a new practice of understanding Holger Zaborowski; 2. Facticity and Ereignis Thomas Sheehan; 3. The null basis-being of a nullity, or between two nothings - Heidegger's uncanniness Simon Critchley; 4. Freedom Charles Guignon; 5. Ontotheology Iain Thomson; Part II. Interpreting Heidegger's Interpretation: 6. Being at the beginning: Heidegger's interpretation of Heraclitus Daniel O. Dahlstrom; (...) 7. Being-affected: Heidegger, Aristotle, and the pathology of truth Josh Hayes; 8. Heidegger's interpretation of Kant Stephan Ka;ufer; 9. The death of God and the life of being: Heidegger's confrontation with Nietzsche Tracy Colony; 10. Heidegger's poetics of relationality Andrew Mitchell; Part III. Interpreting Heidegger's Critics: 11. Analyzing Heidegger: a history of analytic reactions to Heidegger Lee Braver; 12. Le;vinas and Heidegger: a strange conversation Wayne Froman; 13. Derrida's reading of Heidegger Françoise Dastur. (shrink)
Four empirically equivalent versions of general relativity, namely standard GR, Lorentz-invariant gravitational theory, and the gravitational gauge theories of the Lorentz and translation groups, are investigated in the form of a case study for theory underdetermination. The various ontological indeterminacies (both underdetermination and inscrutability of reference) inherent in gravitational theories are analyzed in a detailed comparative study. The concept of practical underdetermination is proposed, followed by a discussion of its adequacy to describe scientific progress.
This paper explores the argument structure of the concept of spontaneous symmetry breaking in the electroweak gauge theory of the Standard Model: the so-called Higgs mechanism. As commonly understood, the Higgs argument is designed to introduce the masses of the gauge bosons by a spontaneous breaking of the gauge symmetry of an additional field, the Higgs field. The technical derivation of the Higgs mechanism, however, consists in a mere reshuffling of degrees of freedom by transforming the Higgs Lagrangian in a (...) gauge-invariant manner. This already raises serious doubts about the adequacy of the entire manoeuvre. It will be shown that no straightforward ontic interpretation of the Higgs mechanism is tenable, since gauge transformations possess no real instantiations. In addition, the explanatory value of the Higgs argument will be critically examined. (shrink)
Quantum theory is a tremendously successful physical theory, but nevertheless suffers from two serious problems: the measurement problem and the problem of interpretational underdetermination. The latter, however, is largely overlooked as a genuine problem of its own. Both problems concern the doctrine of realism, but pull, quite curiously, into opposite directions. The measurement problem can be captured such that due to scientific realism about quantum theory common sense anti-realism follows, while theory underdetermination usually counts as an argument against scientific realism. (...) I will also consider the more refined distinctions of ontic and epistemic realism and demonstrate that quantum theory in its most viable interpretations conflicts with at least one of the various realism claims. A way out of the conundrum is to come to the bold conclusion that quantum theory is, possibly, wrong (in the realist sense). (shrink)
The paper deals with an attempt to present an “abductive-transcendental” argument in favour of a particular version of structural realism (SR), dubbed Intermediate SR. In the first part of the paper the general structure of transcendental arguments is scrutinized with a close view on Kant’s original version and the prospect of their abductive variation. Then the role of symmetries in modern physics, especially symmetries without real instantiations and in particular gauge symmetries is discussed. This is combined with a presentation of (...) SR as a promising current version of scientific realism. The discussion is supported by various arguments form gauge theories in modern physics. Intermediate SR, a realist position about all and only structurally derivable entities located between the extremes of Epistemic and Ontic SR turns out as the best fit to our current fundamental gauge physics and this finally leads to an abductive-transcendental reasoning concerning this position. (shrink)
The concept of measurement is fundamental to a whole range of different disciplines, including not only the natural and engineering sciences, but also laboratory medicine and certain branches of the social sciences. This being the case, the concept of measurement has a particular relevance to the development of top-level ontologies in the area of knowledge engineering. For this reason, the present paper is concerned with ontological aspects of measurement. We are searching for a list of concepts that are apt to (...) characterize measurement methods in a general manner. To establish such means of characterization, we will primarily deal with the semantics of measurement values. (shrink)