Under many circumstances, children and adult rats reorient themselves through a process which operates only on information about the shape of the environment (e.g., Cheng, 1986; Hermer & Spelke, 1996). In contrast, human adults relocate themselves more ﬂexibly, by conjoining geometric and nongeometric information to specify their position (Hermer & Spelke, 1994). The present experiments used a dual-task method to investigate the processes that underlie the ﬂexible conjunction of information. In Experiment 1, subjects reoriented themselves ﬂexibly when they performed no (...) secondary task, but they reoriented themselves like children and adult rats when they engaged in verbal shadowing of continuous speech. In Experiment 2, subjects who engaged in nonverbal shadowing of a continuous rhythm reoriented like nonshadowing subjects, suggesting that the interference effect in Experiment 1 did not stem from general limits on working memory or attention but from processes more speciﬁc to language. In further experiments, verbally shadowing subjects detected and remembered both nongeometric information (Experiment 3) and geometric information (Experiments 1, 2, and 4), but they failed to conjoin the two types of information to specify the positions of objects (Experiment 4). Together. (shrink)
We propose an analysis of the notion of model as crucially related to the notion of point of view. A model in this sense would always suggest a certain way of looking at a real system, a certain way of thinking about it and a certain way of acting upon it. We focus on System Dynamics as a paradigmatic case with respect to many of the features and problems we can find in the field of modelling and simulation. We analyse (...) in detail some of those features. All of them would be present in many other cases of construction and use of models. Furthermore, they would support the thesis that a model can be fruitfully understood as offering a point of view capable of improving our own points of view over a certain system. The point of view offered by the model could include both non-conceptual and conceptual contents, it would have a complex structure and behaviour, and it would have direct consequences on the decisions made by the subjects adopting that point of view. (shrink)
We describe the results of an experiment on decision making in an insurance context. The experiment was designed to test for the underlying rationality of insurance consumers, where rationality is understood in usual economic terms. In particular, using expected utility as the preference function, we test for positive marginal utility, risk aversion, and decreasing absolute risk aversion, all of which are normal postulates for any microeconomic decision context under uncertainty or risk. We find that there the discrepancy from rational decision (...) making increases with the sophistication of the rationality criteria, that irrationality concerning fair premium contracts is uncharacteristically high, and that the slope of absolute risk aversion seems to depend on the format of the insurance contract. (shrink)
In this paper, I analyze the "surprise exam paradox". I think that the paradox can be avoided and I am going to focus on three points: 1) A conflict arises between reasoning and the confidence in the person that makes the original statement. If we examine the situation by reasoning we conclude that the statement is not going to come true, because we trust the person that states it. However, if it is not possible to happen, it happens, and the (...) person told the truth; 2) There is a disjunction among the days of the week: “or it is the first day or it is the second day or … it is the last day” (or Monday or Tuesday or Wednesday or Thursday or Friday). If I still have not been given the exam by Friday, the only possible conclusion is that the exam will be given on Friday. On Thursday, however, thesituation is completely different; 3) It seems that this paradox is a case of contingent futures, which branching time logics usually solve. The truth-value of the sentences is only relative to the branch that takes place in the end. (shrink)
En este trabajo se plantea, en primer lugar, la conveniencia de distinguir en el proceso de la contrastación empirica de hipótesis y teorías entre observación cientifíca y percepción y, en segundo lugar, se muestra como el munda procesado a través de la percepción se erige en base o soporte empírico del conocimiento científico. Una de las consecuencias del trabajo es que Ia tesis de “la carga teórica" de Ia observación ha sido mal planteada, al dar par sentado que esa carga (...) teórica afecta tambien al procesamiento perceptivo de los outputs proporeionados al científico por el instrumental de observación.This paper first suggests that, in analyses of the empirical testing of hypotheses and theories, scientific observation should be distinguished from perception; and goes on to say that the world, as processed by perception, is the basis or empirical foundation of scientific knowledge. This thesis that observation is “theory-laden” has been flawed by its being articulated as applying not only to scientific observation but also to the perceptional processing of the output provided to the scientists by observational instruments. (shrink)
When a risk is exchanged, the exact value for the minimum price (positive or negative) that the purchaser (investor, or insurer) is willing to pay is given by the certainty equivalent wealth level, which in turn depends on his specific utility function. When this utility function is unknown, then only a sufficient condition on the price can ever be found. This paper provides methods for calculating such a sufficient condition, when only limited information on the utility function is known.
El autor, en el contexto del debate sobre la relación entre la justicia constitucional y el proceso democrático, argumenta a favor de considerar al control jurisdiccional de constitucionalidad como un requisito necesario, pero no suficiente, para la existencia de un Estado democrático de derecho. Tras analizar las posturas y argumentos generales de ese debate, así como aspectos singulares del modo en que se viene desarrollando en Latinoamérica, abogará por un modelo de democracia débil, en el que una serie de derechos, (...) fundamentalmente civiles y políticos, estén atrincherados constitucionalmente y sean considerados precondiciones del proceso democrático. Por este último motivo, estos dos tipos de derechos podrían estar protegidos por la justicia constitucional, incluso frente al legislador mayoritario, sin merma de la dimensión democrática del sistema político. Respecto de los derechos sociales, dada su dimensión distributiva y su relación con el bienestar y las necesidades de la población, su garantía no debería de quedar exclusivamente en manos de los jueces, ya que difícilmente pueden ser considerados precondiciones de la democracia: esto no significa, afirma el autor, que no hayan de ser constitucionalizados ni tampoco que en su garantía por parte de los parlamentarios no participe, de algún modo, la justicia constitucional. (shrink)
Se analiza la relación y la distinción entre los conceptos de regulación, autodeterminación y libertad, y se presentan las influencias teóricas que condujeron a su identificación. La cuestión se acota al tratamiento de la teoría de la autodeterminación y la teoría relacional de las necesidades. Se intenta mostrar que la autorregulación no puede identificarse con la autonomía, ni el concepto de autonomía es sinónimo de autodeterminación, porque la autonomía refiere a la propiedad de la voluntad de ser la fuente de (...) la ley, en sentido kantiano, y el concepto de autodeterminación refiere a la propiedad de la voluntad de ser dominio de sí y del resto de las capacidades. El concepto de autorregulación tiene su lugar de origen en la biología y luego se aplica, por extensión, al campo de la psicología. (shrink)
Cognitive mechanisms are based in organisms’biology, and results from biological studies suggest that there is unlikely to be a single mechanism for reorienting or for combining information across modules or domains. Rather, there are likely to be multiple, partly overlapping systems for accomplishing nearly all cognitive and behavioral goals, as is the case for biological mechanisms more generally.
We provide a 'verisimilitudinarian' analysis of the well-known Linda paradox or conjunction fallacy, i.e., the fact that most people judge the probability of the conjunctive statement "Linda is a bank teller and is active in the feminist movement" (B & F) as more probable than the isolated statement "Linda is a bank teller" (B), contrary to an uncontroversial principle of probability theory. The basic idea is that experimental participants may judge B & F a better hypothesis about (...)Linda as compared to B because they evaluate B & F as more verisimilar than B. In fact, the hypothesis "feminist bank teller", while less likely to be true than "bank teller", may well be a better approximation to the truth about Linda. (shrink)
It is argued that the conjunction effect has a disjunctive analog of strong interest for the realism–antirealism debate. It is possible that a proper theory is more confirmed than its (more probable) observational sub-theory and hence than the latter’s disjunctive equivalent, i.e., the disjunction of all proper theories that are empirically equivalent to the given one. This is illustrated by a toy model.
The first cortically based associative circuits integrated olfactory, motivational, and motor information. Many of the neural dynamics present in these evolutionarily ancient, olfactory-motor circuits, such as the broadband frequency, phase, and amplitude modulations seen during recognition of a rewarded olfactory stimulus, are also found in isocortical circuits. These results suggest that mechanisms permitting olfactory associative processing formed the basis for evolutionarily more recent large-scale couplings involving isocortical areas.
The Linda paradox is a key topic in current debates on the rationality of human reasoning and its limitations. We present a novel analysis of this paradox, based on the notion of verisimilitude as studied in the philosophy of science. The comparison with an alternative analysis based on probabilistic confirmation suggests how to overcome some problems of our account by introducing an adequately defined notion of verisimilitudinarian confirmation.
In the last few years, geographers have begun to develop a research interest in children's and young people's attitudes to and relationship with place and locality. While a range of different types of work has been undertaken, most studies are united by their concern for the ethical and practical issues that are raised when children and young people are the subjects of research. In a thought-provoking paper in this journal, Valentine suggested that five main areas of ethical concern might be (...) distinguished: consent; access and structures of compliance; privacy and confidentiality; methodologies and issues of power; and dissemination and advocacy. As she noted, many of these issues are not unique to research with children but are refracted in particular ways because of the particular legal position of children and the inequalities of power between children and adult research workers. In my own work with working class young men aged 15-17, who were no longer children but not yet adults, I found similarities to but also differences from the concerns identified by Valentine, especially as the research I undertook involved repeat interviews. Issues of access, power and dissemination took a different form. In Valentine's paper, the significance of the class, gender, ethnic, age and other social characteristics of both the interviewer(s) and the interviewees and the impact on their interaction were not considered, whereas I found that they were a significant part of the relationships that took place during the course of the research. I also discuss questions of access and of the location of interviewing, ethical issues that arise in representing the views of young people and in returning the research material to them and the problems of trying to undertake critical social research. (shrink)
La mirada hacia atrás que propicia el libro de Francisco Vázquez “La filosofía española: herederos y pretendientes. Una lectura sociológica (1963-1990)” entraña indudables riesgos, pero ninguno comparable a la desmemoria acerca de lo acontecido, sea para bien o para mal, con nuestra transición filosófica a lo largo de aquellos años; y se trata de una mirada imprescindible si queremos, pese a la insalvable incertidumbre, aprender a mirar hacia adelante.
Este texto reconstruye el espacio intelectual en la filosofía durante los años 1940-1950. Distingue tres posiciones, las cuales se irán transformando durante los años 1960 y 1970. El texto define cada posición según sus potencialidades y límites para sobrevivir en el campo de la Filosofía. En diálogo con el libro de Francisco Vázquez intenta comprender qué permaneció y qué cambió en la filosofía española.
Proponents of probabilism argued that 'when an opinion is probable it may be followed even when the contrary opinion is more probable'. Gabriel Vazquez (1549-1604) was the first Jesuit theologian to defend and expand this doctrine. The prevalent theory of sovereignty at the time held that: (1) when sovereigns are victims of wrongs, they take on the role of international judges (thus just wars are just punishments); and (2) the sovereign need not stand before the judgment of any other human (...) being. The conjunction of probabilism and the idea of the sovereign as a superior judge made it conceptually possible for a war to be just on both sides. The reason is that probabilism allows two sovereigns to inculpably carry out two conflicting but probable judicial sentences about the same case. Confronted with this problem, Vazquez decided to eliminate the overlap between sovereign jurisdictions by revising the then dominant conception of sovereign supremacy and proposing criteria for determining > the competent forum to settle sovereign disputes. His views developed during his involvement in the controversy about Castilian claims to the Portuguese throne. (shrink)
In the first volume of the History of Sexuality , Michel Foucault states in passing that prostitution and pornography, like the sexual sciences of medicine and psychiatry, are involved in the proliferation of sexualities and the perverse implantation. Against an influential misinterpretation of this passage on the part of film studies scholar Linda Williams, this paper takes up Foucault’s claim and attempts to explain the mechanism through which the sex industry, and pornography in particular, functions analogously to the sexual (...) sciences in terms of the normalizing form of power that Foucault describes. Whereas Williams sets the question of prostitution aside, and argues that pornography must be a confessional discourse for Foucault, this paper argues that consumption rather than confession is the mechanism through which both prostitution and pornography deploy sexualities within a disciplinary system of power. (shrink)
Thomas Nagel has proposed that the existence of moral luck mandates a general attitude of skepticism in ethics. One popular way of arguing against Nagels claim is to insist that the phenomenon of moral luck itself is an illusion , in the sense that situations in which it seems to occur may be plausibly re-described so as to show that agents need not be held responsible for the unlucky outcomes of their actions. Here I argue that this strategy for explaining (...) away moral luck fails because it does not take account of the fact that agents in morally unlucky circumstances are uniformly subject to a very specific type of epistemic obligation. I then proceed to sketch out an alternative strategy for blocking the inference to skepticism, one that makes use of the distinctive explanatory resources provided by epistemic virtue theory. Key Words: moral luck moral skepticism Thomas Nagel virtue epistemology Linda Zagzebski. (shrink)
In a famous experiment by Tversky and Kahneman (Psychol Rev 90:293–315, 1983), featuring Linda the bank teller, the participants assign a higher probability to a conjunction of propositions than to one of the conjuncts, thereby seemingly committing a probabilistic fallacy. In this paper, we discuss a slightly different example featuring someone named Walter, who also happens to work at a bank, and argue that, in this example, it is rational to assign a higher probability to the conjunction of suitably (...) chosen propositions than to one of the conjuncts. By pointing out the similarities between Tversky and Kahneman’s experiment and our example, we argue that the participants in the experiment may assign probabilities to the propositions in question in such a way that it is also rational for them to give the conjunction a higher probability than one of the conjuncts. (shrink)