The multifarious nature of biodiversity is considered in relation to difficulties of definite determination and managerial mandates for monitoring. At a micro scale there is some convergence with the concept of community, but the linkage is largely lost in the spectra of temporal scope, spatial scales, successional seres, and taxonomic trajectories. Practicality points to selecting suitable suites of indicators as surrogates for particular purposes. Domains of partial ordering on multiple indicators constitute comparable collectives, whereas different domains require recognition of special (...) situations. Theoretical treatise and practical process can proceed in parallel, with dialogue and cross-fertilization serving to invigorate and inspire; whereas compulsive concern for completeness and consistency can be counter-productive as well as unduly expensive. Inability to completely capture all aspects of biodiversity in one full formulation is interesting and integral to issues of biocomplexity. (shrink)
We use the Newell Test as a basis for evaluating ACT-R as an effective architecture for cognitive engineering. Of the 12 functional criteria discussed by Anderson & Lebiere (A&L), we discuss the strengths and weaknesses of ACT-R on the six that we postulate are the most relevant to cognitive engineering.
Robert Myers presents an original moral theory which charts a course between the extremes of consequentialism and contractualism. He puts forward a radically new case for the existence of both agent-neutral and agent-relative values, and gives an innovative answer to the question how such disparate values can be weighed against each other. The result is a theory of morality which combines a balanced account of its content with a ringing affirmation of its authority.
Slavoj Zizek is no ordinary philosopher. Approaching critical theory and psychoanalysis in a recklessly entertaining fashion, Zizek's critical eye alights upon a bewildering and exhilarating range of subjects, from the political apathy of contemporary life, to a joke about the man who thinks he's a chicken, from the ethicial heroism of Keanu Reeves in speed , to what toilet designs reveal about the national psyche. Tony Myers provides a clear and engaging guide to Zizek's key ideas, explaining the main (...) influences on Zizek's thought, most crucially his engagement with Lacanian psychoanalysis, using examples drawn from popular culture and everyday life. Myers outlines the key issues that Zizek's work has tackled, including: * What is a Subject and why is it so important? * The Imaginary, the Symbolic and the Real * What is so terrible about Postmodernity? * How can we distinguish reality from ideology? * What is the relationship between men and women? * Why is Racism always a fantasy? Slavoj Zizek is essential reading for anyone wanting to understand the thought of the critic whom Terry Eagleton has described as "the most formidably brilliant exponent of psychoanalysis, indeed of cultural theory in general, to have emerged in Europe for some decades.". (shrink)
The earth cannot support humanity's increasing population and consumption. Concerned scientists and citizens are therefore wondering how we might work toward a sustainable, survivable human future. Sustainability involves increased technological efficiency and agricultural productivity, but also incentives and attitudes that moderate consumption. Social psychology contributes to changing attitudes and behavior with evidence that a) materialism exacts psychic as well as environmental costs, and b) economic growth has failed to improve human morale. Two principles-the adaptation level phenomenon and social comparison-help explain (...) why materialism and increasing affluence fail to satisfy. (shrink)
Recent work on emergence in physics has focused on the presence of singular limit relations between basal and upper-level theories as a criterion for emergence. However, over-emphasis on the role of singular limit relations has somewhat obscured what it means to say that a property or behaviour is emergent. This paper argues that singular limits are not central to emergence and develops an alternative account of emergence in terms of the failure of basal explainability. As a consequence, emergence and reduction, (...) long held to be two sides of the same coin in the emergentist tradition, are largely decoupled. (shrink)
This paper begins by tracing interest in emergence in physics to the work of condensed matter physicist Philip Anderson. It provides a selective introduction to contemporary philosophical approaches to emergence. It surveys two exciting areas of current work that give good reason to re-evaluate our views about emergence in physics. One area focuses on physical systems wherein fundamental theories appear to break down. The other area is the quantum-to-classical transition, where some have claimed that a complete explanation of the behaviors (...) and features of the objects of classical physics entirely in quantum terms is now within our grasp. We suggest that the most useful way to approach the emergent/non-emergent distinction is in epistemic terms, and more specifically that the failure of reductive explanation is constitutive of emergence in physics. (shrink)
The nature of conceptual analysis is elucidated by a proposed solution to moore's paradox of analysis. Occurrent, Dispositional, And property concepts are distinguished, And the notion of epistemic gain is introduced and explained. It is shown that although a correct analysis equates property concepts this is done with epistemic gain. It is argued that in a correct analysis there must be no identity between analysans and analysandum in respect to occurrent concepts. The relevance of thought experiments to conceptual analysis is (...) discussed and it is concluded that conceptual analysis consists of a transformation of knowledge how into knowledge that. (shrink)
James argued that time is a sensation, and the main point of this paper is to deny that claim. The concept of the specious present is explained, indicating how it clarifies the concept of "the present moment." But neither it nor an argument used by Mach and James show time to be a sensation. The analysis presented here requires distinguishing concepts of sensation from concepts of temporal relations. James' view is really a theory that time-as-duration is sensed. But this assumes (...) that the description of time as sensed is also a description of time as an objective property of independent events. This is nowhere established, and making it plausible is a recurrent problem for philosophies like neutral monism and radical empiricism. (shrink)
In this paper I defend the theory that knowledge is credit-worthy true belief against a family of objections, one of which was leveled against it in a recent paper by Jennifer Lackey. In that paper, Lackey argues that testimonial knowledge is problematic for the credit-worthiness theory because when person A comes to know that p by way of the testimony of person B, it would appear that any credit due to A for coming to believe truly that p belongs to (...) the testifier, B, rather than the hearer, A. If so, then knowledge would appear not to be a matter of credit for true belief. I think that the problem this raises actually has little to do with the fact that the knowledge comes by way of testimony, and that similar objections can be formulated in terms of perceptual and memorial knowledge. I will attempt to neutralize these objections by drawing a distinction between credit as praiseworthiness and credit as attributability. (shrink)
According to orthodox Christianity, salvation depends on faith in Christ. If, however, God eternally punishes those who die ignorant of Christ, it appears that we have special instance of the problem of evil: the punishment of the religiously innocent. This is called the soteriological problem of evil. Using Molina's concept of middle knowledge, William Lane Craig develops a solution to this problem which he considers a theodicy. As developed by Craig, the Molinist theodicy rests on the problematic assumption that all (...) informed persons who would freely reject Christ are culpable. Using an informed Muslim as a counter-example, I try to show that Craig's Molinist solution begs the question. (shrink)
The notion that there is a category mistake or some other conceptual confusion in regarding seeing, hearing, and other forms of perception as events, states, or processes is incorrect. Ryle's analysis of "seeing" as an achievement word does not rule out our regarding seeing as an event, but in fact suggests that we do so when we carry the analysis beyond the point where Ryle leaves it. Furthermore there are uses of "see" not noticed by Ryle which justify our saying (...) that within certain contexts seeing is a state and within other contexts a process. The question of what these events, states, and processes are cannot be met without recognizing a fundamental duality of aspect that characterizes perception. This duality can be formulated in terms of the way perception is known. One who observes a perceiver knows the perceiver's perception in a categorically different way than the perceiver knows it. From this it can be seen that perceptual events, states, and processes have both a physical aspect and an epistemological aspect. Any attempt to reduce one of these aspects to the other would involve a category mistake. (shrink)
As computer-based information systems start to have a great impact on people, organizations, and society as a whole, there is much debate about information technology in relation to social control and privacy, security and reliability, and ethics and professional responsibilities. However, more often than not, these debates reveal some fundamental disagreements, sometimes about first principles. In this article the authors suggest that a fruitful and interesting way to conceptualize some of these moral and ethical issues associated with the use of (...) information technology is to apply the principles of Aristotle's ethics to this topic. They argue that framing the moral and ethical choices associated with information technology in Aristotelian terms draws attention to the fact that there are fundamental dilemmas to be addressed. These dilemmas are discussed in relation to the four areas suggested by Dejoie, Fowler, and Paradice (1991): (a) privacy, (b) information accuracy, (c) access to information, and (d) intellectual property rights. The dilemmas associated with all four areas are illustrated with references to recent legal developments in Australia and New Zealand. (shrink)
Three and 4-year-old children were tested on matched versions of Zaitchik's (1990) photo task and Wimmer and Perner's (1983) false belief task. Although replicating Zaitchik's finding that false belief and photo task are of equal difficulty, this applied only to mean performance across subjects and no substantial correlation between the two tasks was found. This suggests that the two tasks tap different intellectual abilities. It was further discovered that children's performance can be improved by drawing their attention to the back (...) of the photo but not by drawing attention to the person holding the false belief. Results are interpreted as showing that children's difficulty with the photo task is due to referential confusion about which scene the question refers to (the picture or reality) while the hurdle in the false belief task is to understand that the believer misrepresents reality. (shrink)
Field theories have been central to physics over the last 150 years, and there are several theories in contemporary physics in which physical fields play key causal and explanatory roles. This paper proposes a novel field trope-bundle (FTB) ontology on which fields are composed of bundles of particularized property instances, called tropes and goes on to describe some virtues of this ontology. It begins with a critical examination of the dominant view about the ontology of fields, that fields are properties (...) of a substantial substratum. (shrink)
Teachers Behaving Badly? is concerned about sexual behaviour that may occur between adults working in and connected to the school, and teacher/older pupil relations, initiated by both parties. Leaders faced with trying to sort out these issues find that they are not always clear-cut. Often there are no easy resolutions and the consequences may be potentially explosive for the individuals concerned, for the school, and for the community.
Many explanations in physics rely on idealized models of physical systems. These explanations fail to satisfy the conditions of standard normative accounts of explanation. Recently, some philosophers have claimed that idealizations can be used to underwrite explanation nonetheless, but only when they are what have variously been called representational, Galilean, controllable or harmless idealizations. This paper argues that such a half-measure is untenable and that idealizations not of this sort can have explanatory capacities.
According to Thomas Nagel, morality's authority is determined by the extent to which its way of balancing agent-neutral and agent-relative values resembles reason's. He himself would like to think that the resemblance is close enough to ensure that it will always be reasonable to act as morality demands. But his attempts to establish this never really get off the ground, in large part because he never makes it very clear how these two perspectives on value are to be characterized. My (...) goal in this paper is to show how we might flesh out Nagel's conception of these matters by construing reason as a kind of self-governance and morality as involving a certain kind of cooperation. The challenge will therefore be to determine what self-governance and cooperation require of people given the assumption that there are objective values and that they take both the agentneutral and the agent-relative forms. What we shall find is that their requirements differ rather more than Nagel allows, but perhaps not enough to prevent morality from being in some significant sense inescapable. (shrink)
The problem of the current research is to develop an instrument that accurately measures individuals' adherence or nonadherence to both Protestant Ethic and contemporary work values. The study confirms that the traditional Protestant Ethic work values and the contemporary work values are different and the instrument used to measure the work values that individuals actually support is valid and reliable. Two scales were developed based on Protestant Ethic work values and contemporary work values. A four-point Likert scale was used to (...) indicate the extent of agreement or disagreement with statements written to represent Protestant Ethic and contemporary work values. Face and content validities of the instrument were established by using two panels of experts — one consisted of authorities in the area of work values; the other consisted of editorial critics. Reliability of the instrument was confirmed by the Kuder-Richardson and test-retest methods. Four sets of work values emerged with significant discrimination among them. (shrink)
Nick Huggett and Robert Weingard (1994) have recently proposed a novel approach to interpreting field theories in physics, one which makes central use of the fact that a field generally has an infinite number of degrees of freedom in any finite region of space it occupies. Their characterization, they argue, (i) reproduces our intuitive categorizations of fields in the classical domain and thereby (ii) provides a basis for arguing that the quantum field is a field. Furthermore, (iii) it accomplishes these (...) tasks better than does a well-known rival approach due to Paul Teller (1990, 1995). This paper contends that all three of these claims are mistaken, and suggests that Huggett and Weingard have not shown how counting degrees of freedom provides any insight into the interpretation or the formal properties of field theories in physics. (shrink)
According to the practicality requirement, there could be truths about what people have reason to do only if people’s motivating states could be, in an appropriate sense, either correct or incorrect. Yet according to the Humean theory of motivation, people’s motivating states are a species of desire, and these desires are not a species of belief, being neither identical to nor entailed by them; and according to the standard view of desire, P’s desire to is, at bottom, a disposition to (...) act in whatever ways she believes will increase her chances of -ing. As there is no obvious sense in which such disposition are aiming to get P’s reasons right, they seem incapable of satisfying the practicality requirement and scepticism about normative truths seems to follow. I argue, first, that this sceptical conclusion is best avoided, not by rejecting either the practicality requirement or the Humean theory of motivation, but rather by rejecting the standard view of desire, and, second, that this is best done by endorsing a holistic view, according to which the contents of people’s desires depend importantly, though not essentially, on the contents of their normative beliefs. (shrink)
A signal development in contemporary physics is the widespread use, in explanatory contexts, of highly idealized models. This paper argues that some highly idealized models in physics have genuine explanatory power, and it extends the explanatory role for such idealizations beyond the scope of previous philosophical work. It focuses on idealizations of nonlinear oscillator systems.
(1)Four varieties of primitive affect are distinguishable, characterised by (a) strain, and (b) relaxation in response to a favourable situation, and by (c) strain, and (d) relaxation in response to one unfavourable. Exhilaration, gladness and interest arise from (a); ease, bliss and contentment from (b); uneasiness, distress and repugnance from (c), depression, sadness and apathy from (d). (2)These affects are due to (i) the organic harmony or discord induced by the environment; wherewith are evoked (ii) innately purposive patterns of out-going (...) locomotor and organic activity, partly self-controlled and producing organic sensations; the latter again induce (iii) organic harmony or discord. Self-activity is “affected” by (i), (ii) and (iii). An innate basis is afforded by (i) and (ii) for the affect, which is completely developed by (iii) derived from actual expression. (3)Instincts are integrated from different higher and lower reflexes, emotions from different instincts, sentiments from different emotions organized within progressively higher systems and subjected to control and inhibition, which are important determinants of the accompanying feeling. In the lowest reflexes the self is “affected” only by (iii). The higher reflexes are accompanied by the affects evoked as described above in (2). Instincts, emotions and sentiments are accom panied by their special feelings depending on the integration of dispositions to lower feelings and on (ii) and (iii). (shrink)
Context: Although ethics consultation is commonplace in United States (U.S.) hospitals, descriptive data about this health service are lacking. Objective: To describe the prevalence, practitioners, and processes of ethics consultation in U.S. hospitals. Design: A 56-item phone or questionnaire survey of the "best informant" within each hospital. Participants: Random sample of 600 U.S. general hospitals, stratified by bed size. Results: The response rate was 87.4%. Ethics consultation services (ECSs) were found in 81% of all general hospitals in the U.S., and (...) in 100% of hospitals with more than 400 beds. The median number of consults performed by ECSs in the year prior to survey was 3. Most individuals performing ethics consultation were physicians (34%), nurses (31%), social workers (11%), or chaplains (10%). Only 41% had formal supervised training in ethics consultation. Consultation practices varied widely both within and between ECSs. For example, 65% of ECSs always made recommendations, whereas 6% never did. These findings highlight a need to clarify standards for ethics consultation practices. (shrink)
While I may have misunderstood certain points in Craig's Molinist theodicy, a careful reading of my article will show that Craig is incorrect in his claim that I have failed to evaluate his proposal on the basis of its asserted standard: plausibility. The heart of my argument is that Craig's theodicy is implausible because it fails to provide a credible explanation of the culpability of all non-believers. In this rejoinder I try to show (1) why an evidentialist exoneration of reflective (...) disbelievers (in Christ) also applies, contra Craig, to the unevangelized; and (2) that an evidentialist account of reflective disbelief is more plausible than Craig's sinful-resistance account. (shrink)
Allthough small business accounts for over 90% of businesses in U.K. and indeed elsewhere, they remain the largely uncharted area of ethics. There has not been any research based on the perspective of small business owners, to define what echical delemmas they face and how, if at all, they resolve them. This paper explores ethics from the perspective of small business owner, using focus groups and reports on four clearly identifiable themes of ethical delemmas; entrepreneurial activity itself, conflicts of personal (...) values with business needs, social responsibility and the impact of owners' personality on business ethics. The mechanisms for resolving ethical dilemmas is not at all clear, as there appears to be a web of filters which are used in an inter-connected way. However a common starting point for resolving an ethical delemma which involves others is based on identifying who it is (e.g., a friend or institution) and the quality of the relationship with that person. The research yielded a rich source of material on business ethics and it is clear that future researchers must focus on this sector if business ethics is to make significant advances. (shrink)
Recent work by Robert Batterman and Alexander Rueger has brought attention to cases in physics in which governing laws at the base level “break down” and singular limit relations obtain between base- and upper-level theories. As a result, they claim, these are cases with emergent upper-level properties. This paper contends that this inference—from singular limits to explanatory failure, novelty or irreducibility, and then to emergence—is mistaken. The van der Pol nonlinear oscillator is used to show that there can be a (...) full explanation of upper-level properties entirely in base-level terms even when singular limits are present. Whether upper-level properties are emergent depends not on the presence of a singular limit but rather on details of the ampliative approximation methods used. The paper suggests that focusing on explanatory deficiency at the base level is key to understanding emergence in physics. (shrink)
Many commentators have contrasted the way that sociability is theorized in the writings of Mary Astell and Damaris Masham, emphasizing the extent to which Masham is more interested in embodied, worldly existence. I argue, by contrast, that Astell's own interest in imagining a constitutively relational individual emerges once we pay attention to her use of religious texts and tropes. To explore the relevance of Astell's Christianity, I emphasize both how Astell's Christianity shapes her view of the individual's relation to society (...) and how Masham's contrasting views can be analyzed through the lens of her charge that Astell is an “enthusiast.” In late seventeenth-century England, “enthusiasm” was a term of abuse that, commentators have recently argued, could function polemically to dismiss those deemed either excessively social or antisocial. By accusing Astell of enthusiasm, I claim, Masham seeks to marginalize the relational self that Astell imagines and to promote a more instrumental view of social ties. I suggest some aspects of Astell's thought that may have struck contemporaries as “enthusiastic” and contrast her vision of the self with Masham's more hedonistic subject. I conclude that, although each woman differently configures the relation between self and society, they share a desire to imagine autonomy within a relational framework. (shrink)