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Steve Petersen [12]Steven E. Petersen [5]
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Profile: Stephen Petersen (Niagara University)
  1. Steve Petersen, Minimum Message Length as a Truth-Conducive Simplicity Measure.
    given at the 2007 Formal Epistemology Workshop at Carnegie Mellon June 2nd. Good compression must track higher vs lower probability of inputs, and this is one way to approach how simplicity tracks truth.
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  2. Steve Petersen, Belief-Desire Coherence.
    Tradition compels me to write dissertation acknowledgements that are long, effusive, and unprofessional. Fortunately for me, I heartily endorse that tradition.
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  3. Steve Petersen, Naturalism is (Literally) Self-Explanatory.
    Methodological naturalism states (roughly speaking) that only science can be a route to knowledge. This purported piece of knowledge looks self-condemning, however; after all, it was formulated in the armchair, and not in the laboratory. I argue that on a popular (if largely unarticulated) construal of naturalism as inference to the best explanation, methodological naturalism escapes this charge of internal incoherence, and in fact is self-endorsing rather than self-condemning.
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  4. Steve Petersen, Simplicity Tracks Truth Because Compression Tracks Probability.
    The simplicity of a theory seems closely related to how well the theory summarizes individual data points. Think, for example, of classic curve-fitting. It is easy to get perfect data-fit with a ‘‘theory’’ that simply lists each point of data, but such a theory is maximally unsimple (for the data-fit). The simple theory suggests instead that there is one underlying curve that summarizes this data, and we usually prefer such a theory even at some expense in data-fit. In general, it (...)
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  5. Steve Petersen, When You Can Keep It and Give It Away: The Ethics of Intellectual Property.
    What is “property”? Property Roughly, thing x is the (private) property of agent A if and only if A has exclusive and extensive legal rights of access and / or use for x.
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  6. Steve Petersen (forthcoming). Designing People to Serve. In Patrick Lin, George Bekey & Keith Abney (eds.), Robot Ethics. MIT Press.
    I argue that, contrary to intuition, it would be both possible and permissible to design people - whether artificial or organic - who by their nature desire to do tasks we find unpleasant.
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  7. Steve Petersen (2013). Utilitarian Epistemology. Synthese 190 (6):1173-1184.
    Standard epistemology takes it for granted that there is a special kind of value: epistemic value. This claim does not seem to sit well with act utilitarianism, however, since it holds that only welfare is of real value. I first develop a particularly utilitarian sense of “epistemic value”, according to which it is closely analogous to the nature of financial value. I then demonstrate the promise this approach has for two current puzzles in the intersection of epistemology and value theory: (...)
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  8. Steven M. Nelson, Kathleen B. McDermott & Steven E. Petersen (2012). In Favor of a 'Fractionation' View of Ventral Parietal Cortex: Comment on Cabeza Et Al. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 16 (8):399-400.
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  9. Nico U. F. Dosenbach, Damien A. Fair, Alexander L. Cohen, Bradley L. Schlaggar & Steven E. Petersen (2008). A Dual-Networks Architecture of Top-Down Control. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 12 (3):99-105.
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  10. Steve Petersen (2008). Analysis, Schmanalysis. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 38 (2):pp. 289-299.
    In Naming and Necessity, Saul Kripke employs a handy philosophical trick: he invents the term ‘schmidentity’ to argue indirectly for his favored account of identity. Kripke says in a footnote that he wishes someday “to elaborate on the utility of this device”. In this paper, I first take up a general elaboration on his behalf. I then apply the trick to support an attractive but somewhat unorthodox picture of conceptual analysis—one according to which it is a process of forming intentions (...)
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  11. Steve Petersen (2006). Construing Faith as Action Won't Save Pascal's Wager. Philo 9 (2):221-229.
    Arthur Falk has proposed a new construal of faith according to which it is not a mere species of belief, but has essential components in action. This twist on faith promises to resurrect Pascal’s Wager, making faith compatible with reason by believing as the scientist but acting as the theist. I argue that Falk’s proposal leaves religious faith in no better shape; in particular, it merely reframes the question in terms of rational desires rather than rational beliefs.
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  12. Steven E. Petersen & Adina L. Roskies (2001). Visualizing Human Brain Function. In E. Bizzi, P. Calissano & V. Volterra (eds.), Frontiers of Life, Vol Iii: The Intelligent Systems, Part One: The Brain of Homo Sapiens. Academic Press.
    Running head: Functional neuroimaging Abstract Several recently developed techniques enable the investigation of the neural basis of cognitive function in the human brain. Two of these, PET and fMRI, yield whole-brain images reflecting regional neural activity associated with the performance of specific tasks. This article explores the spatial and temporal capabilities and limitations of these techniques, and discusses technical, biological, and cognitive issues relevant to understanding the goals and methods of neuroimaging studies. The types of advances in understanding cognitive and (...)
     
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  13. William M. Kelley, Randy L. Buckner & Steven E. Petersen (1998). UPDATE-Response-Asymmetric Frontal Activation During Episodic Memory: What Kind of Specificity? Trends in Cognitive Sciences 2 (11):421-421.
     
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  14. David Lee Robinson & Steven E. Petersen (1986). The Neurobiology of Attention. In David A. Oakley (ed.), Mind and Brain. Methuen.
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  15. Steve Petersen, Comments on Carl Wagner's Jeffrey Conditioning and External Bayesianity.
    Jeffrey conditioning allows updating in Bayesian style when the evidence is uncertain. A weighted average, essentially, over classically updating on the alternatives. Unlike classical Bayesian conditioning, this allows learning to be unlearned.
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