One effect of information technology is the increasing need to present information visually. The trend raises intriguing questions. What is the logical status of reasoning that employs visualization? What are the cognitive advantages and pitfalls of this reasoning? What kinds of tools can be developed to aid in the use of visual representation? This newest volume on the Studies in Logic and Computation series addresses the logical aspects of the visualization of information. The authors of these specially commissioned papers explore (...) the properties of diagrams, charts, and maps, and their use in problem solving and teaching basic reasoning skills. As computers make visual representations more commonplace, it is important for professionals, researchers and students in computer science, philosophy, and logic to develop an understanding of these tools; this book can clarify the relationship between visuals and information. (shrink)
Sociologists, philosophers and historians of science are gradually recognizing the importance of visual representation. This is part of a more general movement away from a theory-centric view of science and towards an interest in practical aspects of observation and experimentation. Rather than treating science as a matter of demonstrating the logical connection between theoretical and empirical statements, an increasing number of investigations are examining how scientists compose and use diagrams, graphs, photographs, micrographs, maps, charts, and related visual displays. This (...) paper focuses on diagrams in biology, and tries to demonstrate how diagrams are an integral part of the production of scientific knowledge. In order to disclose some of the distinctive practical and analytical uses of diagrams, the paper contrasts the way diagrams and photographs are used in biological texts. Both diagrams and photographs are shown to be “constructions” that separately and together mediate the investigation of scientific phenoman. (shrink)
This article puts forward the notion of “evolving diagram” as an important case of mathematical diagram. An evolving diagram combines, through a dynamic graphical enrichment, the representation of an object and the representation of a piece of reasoning based on the representation of that object. Evolving diagrams can be illustrated in particular with category-theoretic diagrams (hereafter “diagrams*”) in the context of “sketch theory,” a branch of modern category theory. It is argued that sketch theory provides a diagrammatic* (...) theory of diagrams*, that it helps to overcome the rivalry between set theory and category theory as a general semantical framework, and that it suggests a more flexible understanding of the opposition between formal proofs and diagrammatic reasoning. Thus, the aim of the paper is twofold. First, it claims that diagrams* provide a clear example of evolving diagrams, and shed light on them as a general phenomenon. Second, in return, it uses sketches, understood as evolving diagrams, to show how diagrams* in general should be re-evaluated positively. (shrink)
This paper presents examples of infinite diagrams (as well as infinite limits of finite diagrams) whose use is more or less essential for understanding and accepting various proofs in higher mathematics. The significance of these is discussed with respect to the thesis that every proof can be formalized, and a "pre" form of this thesis that every proof can be presented in everyday statements-only form.
Proposition I.1 is, by far, the most popular example used to justify the thesis that many of Euclid’s geometric arguments are diagram-based. Many scholars have recently articulated this thesis in different ways and argued for it. My purpose is to reformulate it in a quite general way, by describing what I take to be the twofold role that diagrams play in Euclid’s plane geometry (EPG). Euclid’s arguments are object-dependent. They are about geometric objects. Hence, they cannot be diagram-based unless (...)diagrams are supposed to have an appropriate relation with these objects. I take this relation to be a quite peculiar sort of representation. Its peculiarity depends on the two following claims that I shall argue for: ( i ) The identity conditions of EPG objects are provided by the identity conditions of the diagrams that represent them; ( ii ) EPG objects inherit some properties and relations from these diagrams. (shrink)
Many important concepts of the calculus are difficult to grasp, and they may appear epistemologically unjustified. For example, how does a real function appear in “small” neighborhoods of its points? How does it appear at infinity? Diagrams allow us to overcome the difficulty in constructing representations of mathematical critical situations and objects. For example, they actually reveal the behavior of a real function not “close to” a point (as in the standard limit theory) but “in” the point. We are (...) interested in our research in the diagrams which play an optical role –microscopes and “microscopes within microscopes”, telescopes, windows, a mirror role (to externalize rough mental models), and an unveiling role (to help create new and interesting mathematical concepts, theories, and structures). In this paper we describe some examples of optical diagrams as a particular kind of epistemic mediator able to perform the explanatory abductive task of providing a better understanding of the calculus, through a non-standard model of analysis. We also maintain they can be used in many other different epistemological and cognitive situations. (shrink)
Proof-theoretical notions and techniques, developed on the basis of sentential/symbolic representations of formal proofs, are applied to Euler diagrams. A translation of an Euler diagrammatic system into a natural deduction system is given, and the soundness and faithfulness of the translation are proved. Some consequences of the translation are discussed in view of the notion of free ride, which is mainly discussed in the literature of cognitive science as an account of inferential efficacy of diagrams. The translation enables (...) us to formalize and analyze free ride in terms of proof theory. The notion of normal form of Euler diagrammatic proofs is investigated, and a normalization theorem is proved. Some consequences of the theorem are further discussed: in particular, an analysis of the structure of normal diagrammatic proofs; a diagrammatic counterpart of the usual subformula property; and a characterization of diagrammatic proofs compared with natural deduction proofs. (shrink)
In this paper, I explore general features of the “architecture” (relations of white space, diagram, and text on the page) of medieval manuscripts and early printed editions of Euclidean geometry. My focus is primarily on diagrams in the Arabic transmission, although I use some examples from both Byzantine Greek and medieval Latin manuscripts as a foil to throw light on distinctive features of the Arabic transmission. My investigations suggest that the “architecture” often takes shape against the backdrop of an (...) educational landscape. The constraints of the economic marketplace and cultural aesthetic ideals also appear to play a role in determining the “architecture” of both manuscripts and early printed editions. (shrink)
Scientists use a variety of modes of representation in their work, but philosophers have studied mainly sentences expressing propositions. I ask whether diagrams are mere conveniences in expressing propositions or whether they are a distinct, ineliminable mode of representation in scientific texts. The case of path analysis, a statistical method for quantitatively assessing the relative degree of causal determination of variation as expressed in a causal path diagram, is discussed. Path analysis presents a worst case for arguments against eliminability (...) since path diagrams are usually presumed to be mathematically or logically “equivalent” in an important sense to sets of linear path equations. I argue that path diagrams are strongly generative, i.e., that they add analytical power to path analysis beyond what is supplied by linear equations, and therefore that they are ineliminable in a strong scientific sense. (shrink)
This paper aims to give a substantive account of how Feynman used diagrams in the first lectures in which he explained his new approach to quantum electrodynamics. By critically examining unpublished lecture notes, Feynman’s use and interpretation of both "Feynman diagrams" and other visual representations will be illuminated. This paper discusses how the morphology of Feynman’s early diagrams were determined by both highly contextual issues, which molded his images to local needs and particular physical characterizations, and an (...) overarching common diagrammatic style, which facilitated Feynman’s movement between different diagrams despite their divergent forms and significance. (shrink)
The representational epistemic approach to the design of visual displays and notation systems advocates encoding the fundamental conceptual structure of a knowledge domain directly in the structure of a representational system. It is claimed that representations so designed will benefit from greater semantic transparency, which enhances comprehension and ease of learning, and plastic generativity, which makes the meaningful manipulation of the representation easier and less error prone. Epistemic principles for encoding fundamental conceptual structures directly in representational schemes are described. The (...) diagrammatic recodification of probability theory is undertaken to demonstrate how the fundamental conceptual structure of a knowledge domain can be analyzed, how the identified conceptual structure may be encoded in a representational system, and the cognitive benefits that follow. An experiment shows the new probability space diagrams are superior to the conventional approach for learning this conceptually challenging topic. (shrink)
Timing diagrams are popular in hardware design. They have been formalized for use in reasoning tasks, such as computer-aided verification. These efforts have largely treated timing diagrams as interfaces to established notations for which verification is decidable; this has restricted timing diagrams to expressing only regular language properties. This paper presents a timing diagram logic capable of expressing certain context-free and context-sensitive properties. It shows that verification is decidable for properties expressible in this logic. More specifically, it (...) shows that containment of -regular languages generated by Büchi automata in timing diagram languages is decidable. The result relies on a correlation between timing diagram and reversal bounded counter machine languages. (shrink)
Dynamo: Diagrams for Evolutionary Game Dynamics is free, open-source software used to create phase diagrams and other images related to dynamical systems from evolutionary game theory. We describe how to use the software’s default settings to generate phase diagrams quickly and easily. We then explain how to take advantage of the software’s intermediate and advanced features to create diagrams that highlight the key properties of the dynamical system under study. Sample code and output are provided to (...) help demonstrate the software’s capabilities. (shrink)
The Toulmin diagram layout is very familiar and widely used, particularly in the teaching of critical thinking skills. The conventional box-and-arrow diagram is equally familiar and widespread. Translation between the two throws up a number of interesting challenges. Some of these challenges (such as the relationship between Toulmin warrants and their counterparts in traditional diagrams) represent slightly different ways of looking at old and deep theoretical questions. Others (such as how to allow Toulmin diagrams to be recursive) are (...) diagrammatic versions of questions that have already been addressed in artificial intelligence models of argument. But there are further questions (such as the relationships between refutations, rebuttals and undercutters, and the roles of multiple warrants) that are posed as a specific result of examining the diagram inter-translation problem. These three classes of problems are discussed. To the first class are addressed solutions based on engineering pragmatism; to the second class, are addressed solutions drawn from the appropriate literature; and to the third class, fuller exploration is offered justifying the approaches taken in developing solutions that offer both pragmatic utility and theoretical interest. Finally, these solutions are explored briefly in the context of the Araucaria system, showing the ways in which analysts can tackle arguments either using one diagrammatic style or another, or even a combination of the two. (shrink)
Molecular biologists and biochemists often use diagrams to present hypotheses. Analysis of diagrams shows that their content can be expressed with linguistic representations. Why do biologists use visual representations instead? One reason is simple comprehensibility: some diagrams present information which is readily understood from the diagram format, but which would not be comprehensible if the same information was expressed linguistically. But often diagrams are used even when concise, comprehensible linguistic alternatives are available. I explain this phenomenon (...) by showing why diagrammatic representation is especially well suited for a particular kind of explanation common in molecular biology and biochemistry: namely, functional analysis, in which a capacity of the system is explained in terms of capacities of its component parts. (shrink)
Recent accounts of the role of diagrams in mathematical reasoning take a Platonic line, according to which the proof depends on the similarity between the perceived shape of the diagram and the shape of the abstract object. This approach is unable to explain proofs which share the same diagram in spite of drawing conclusions about different figures. Saccheri’s use of the bi-rectangular isosceles quadrilateral in Euclides Vindicatus provides three such proofs. By forsaking abstract objects it is possible to give (...) a natural explanation of Saccheri’s proofs as well as standard geometric proofs and even number-theoretic proofs. (shrink)
Diagrams refer to the phenomena overtly represented, to analogous phenomena, and to previous pictures and their graphic conventions. The diagrams of ecologists Clarke, Hutchinson, and H.T. Odum reveal their search for physical analogies, building on the success of World War II science and the promise of cybernetics. H.T. Odum's energy circuit diagrams reveal also his aspirations for a universal and natural means of reducing complexity to guide the management of diverse ecological and social systems. Graphic conventions concerning (...) framing and translation of ecological processes onto the flat printed page facilitate Odum's ability to act as if ecological relations were decomposable into systems and could be managed by analysts external to the system. (shrink)
Diagrams have played an important role throughout the entire history of differential equations. Geometrical intuition, visual thinking, experimentation on diagrams, conceptions of algorithms and instruments to construct these diagrams, heuristic proofs based on diagrams, have interacted with the development of analytical abstract theories. We aim to analyze these interactions during the two centuries the classical theory of differential equations was developed. They are intimately connected to the difficulties faced in defining what the solution of a differential (...) equation is and in describing the global behavior of such a solution. (shrink)
This article discusses the role of diagrams in mathematical reasoning in the light of a case study in analysis. In the example presented certain combinatorial expressions were first found by using diagrams. In the published proofs the pictures were replaced by reasoning about permutation groups. This article argues that, even though the diagrams are not present in the published papers, they still play a role in the formulation of the proofs. It is shown that they play a (...) role in concept formation as well as representations of proofs. In addition we note that 'visualization' is used in two different ways. In the first sense 'visualization' denotes our inner mental pictures, which enable us to see that a certain fact holds, whereas in the other sense 'visualization' denotes a diagram or representation of something. (shrink)
Organic chemists have been able to develop a robust, theoretical understanding of the phenomena they study; however, the primary theoretical devices employed in this field are not mathematical equations or laws, as is the case in most other physical sciences. Instead it is the diagram, and in particular the structural formula, that carries the explanatory weight in the discipline. To understand how this is so, it is necessary to investigate both the nature of the diagrams employed in organic chemistry (...) and how these diagrams are used in the explanations of the discipline. I will begin this paper by describing and characterizing the roles of the most important sort of diagram used in organic chemistry. Next I will present a model of explanations in organic chemistry and describe how diagrams contribute to these explanations. This will be followed by two examples that will support my abstract account of the role of diagrams in the explanations of organic chemistry. (shrink)
Diagrams are ubiquitous in mathematics. From the most elementary class to the most advanced seminar, in both introductory textbooks and professional journals, diagrams are present, to introduce concepts, increase understanding, and prove results. They thus fulfill a variety of important roles in mathematical practice. Long overlooked by philosophers focused on foundational and ontological issues, these roles have come to receive attention in the past two decades, a trend in line with the growing philosophical interest in actual mathematical practice.
The biological sciences have become increasingly reliant on so-called 'model organisms'. I argue that in this domain, the concept of a descriptive model is essential for understanding scientific practice. Using a case study, I show how such a model was formulated in a preexplanatory context for subsequent use as a prototype from which explanations ultimately may be generated both within the immediate domain of the original model and in additional, related domains. To develop this concept of a descriptive model, I (...) focus on use of the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans and the wiring diagrams that were developed as models of its neural structure. In addition, implications of the concept of a descriptive model, particularly its relevance for the data-phenomena distinction as well as its relation to long-standing debates on realism, are briefly examined. (shrink)
There are two distinct interpretations of the role that Feynman diagrams play in physics: (i) they are calculational devices, a type of notation designed to keep track of complicated mathematical expressions; and (ii) they are representational devices, a type of picture. I argue that Feynman diagrams not only have a calculational function but also represent: they are in some sense pictures. I defend my view through addressing two objections and in so doing I offer an account of representation (...) that explains why Feynman diagrams represent. The account that I advocate is a version of that defended by Kendall Walton, which provides us with a basic characterization of the way that representations in general work and is particularly useful for understanding distinctively pictorial representations - in Walton's terms, depictions. The question of the epistemic function of Feynman diagrams as pictorial representations is left for another time. (shrink)
In this paper, I aim to identify Peirce?s great contribution to logical diagrams and its limit.Peirce is the first person who believed that the same logical status can be given to diagrams as to symbolic systems.Even though this belief led him to invent his own graphical system, Existential Graphs, the success or failure of this system does not determine the value of Peirce?s general insights about logical diagrams.In order to make this point clear, I will show that (...) Peirce?s revolutionary ideas about diagrams not only overcame some important defects of Venn diagrams but opened a new horizon for logical diagrams.Finally, I will point out where Peirce?s new horizon for logical diagrams stopped and will claim that this limit is mainly responsible for the discrepancy between Peirce?s and others? estimates of his contribution to logical diagrams. (shrink)
This book focuses on the mind and its ability to seek answers to unknown or unanswered questions. The theory of educating provides the grounding for using V diagrams by students, educators, researchers, and parents. Teachers make lesson plans using V diagrams and concept maps. They become expert coaches in guiding student performances. Students learn to construct their own knowledge. They change from question-answerers to question-askers. Parents share meaning with their children and their children's teachers and administrators. Administrators monitor (...) programs and are in touch with all participants in schools and universities. Researchers and evaluators can share records of events and facts. With this theory working in the classrooms and laboratories of many practical places of educating plus extending into the world of technology literacy, The Art of Educating with V Diagrams explains how educating works. (shrink)
While claiming that diagrams can only be admitted as a method of strict proof if the underlying axioms are precisely known and explicitly spelled out, Hilbert praised Minkowski’s Geometry of Numbers and his diagram-based reasoning as a specimen of an arithmetical theory operating “rigorously” with geometrical concepts and signs. In this connection, in the first phase of his foundational views on the axiomatic method, Hilbert also held that diagrams are to be thought of as “drawn formulas”, and formulas (...) as “written diagrams”, thus suggesting that the former encapsulate propositional information which can be extracted and translated into formulas. In the case of Minkowski diagrams, local geometrical axioms were actually being produced, starting with the diagrams, by a process that was both constrained and fostered by the requirement, brought about by the axiomatic method itself, that geometry ought to be made independent of analysis. This paper aims at making a twofold point. On the one hand, it shows that Minkowski’s diagrammatic methods in number theory prompted Hilbert’s axiomatic investigations into the notion of a straight line as the shortest distance between two points, which start from his earlier work focused on the role of the triangle inequality property in the foundations of geometry, and lead up to his formulation of the 1900 Fourth Problem. On the other hand, it purports to make clear how Hilbert’s assessment of Minkowski’s diagram-based reasoning in number theory both raises and illuminates conceptual compatibility concerns that were crucial to his philosophy of mathematics. (shrink)
A logical system is studied whose well-formed representations consist of diagrams rather than formulas. The system, due to Shin [2, 3], is shown to be complete by an argument concerning maximally consistent sets of diagrams. The argument is complicated by the lack of a straight forward counterpart of atomic formulas for diagrams, and by the lack of a counterpart of negation for most diagrams.
This paper describes Peirce's systems of logic diagrams, focusing on the so-called ''existential'' graphs, which are equivalent to the first-order predicate calculus. It analyses their implications for the nature of mental representations, particularly mental models with which they have many characteristics in common. The graphs are intended to be iconic, i.e., to have a structure analogous to the structure of what they represent. They have emergent logical consequences and a single graph can capture all the different ways in which (...) a possibility can occur. Mental models share these properties. But, as the graphs show, certain aspects of propositions cannot be represented in an iconic or visualisable way. They include negation, and the representation of possibilities qua possibilities, which both require representations that do not depend on a perceptual modality. Peirce took his graphs to reveal the fundamental operations of reasoning, and the paper concludes with an analysis of different hypotheses about these operations. (shrink)
Using as case studies two early diagrams that represent mechanisms of the cell division cycle, we aim to extend prior philosophical analyses of the roles of diagrams in scientific reasoning, and specifically their role in biological reasoning. The diagrams we discuss are, in practice, integral and indispensible elements of reasoning from experimental data about the cell division cycle to mathematical models of the cycle’s molecular mechanisms. In accordance with prior analyses, the diagrams provide functional explanations of (...) the cell cycle and facilitate the construction of mathematical models of the cell cycle. But, extending beyond those analyses, we show how diagrams facilitate the construction of mathematical models, and we argue that the diagrams permit nomological explanations of the cell cycle. We further argue that what makes diagrams integral and indispensible for explanation and model construction is their nature as locality aids: they group together information that is to be used together in a way that sentential representations do not. (shrink)
From the 1930s through the 1970s, C. H. Waddington attempted to reunite genetics, embryology, and evolution. One of the means to effect this synthesis was his model of the epigenetic landscape. This image originally recast genetic data in terms of embryological diagrams and was used to show the identity of genes and inducers and to suggest the similarities between embryological and genetic approaches to development. Later, the image became more complex and integrated gene activity and mutations. These revised epigenetic (...) landscapes presented an image of how mutations could alter developmental pathways to yield larger phenotypic changes. These diagrams became less important as the operon became used to model differential gene regulation. (shrink)
Linear structural equation models (SEMs) are widely used in sociology, econometrics, biology, and other sciences. A SEM (without free parameters) has two parts: a probability distribution (in the Normal case specified by a set of linear structural equations and a covariance matrix among the “error” or “disturbance” terms), and an associated path diagram corresponding to the causal relations among variables specified by the structural equations and the correlations among the error terms. It is often thought that the path diagram is (...) nothing more than a heuristic device for illustrating the assumptions of the model. However, in this paper, we will show how path diagrams can be used to solve a number of important problems in structural equation modelling. (shrink)
Linear structural equation models (SEMs) are widely used in sociology, econometrics, biology, and other sciences. A SEM (without free parameters) has two parts: a probability distribution (in the Normal case specified by a set of linear structural equations and a covariance matrix among the “error” or “disturbance” terms), and an associated path diagram corresponding to the functional composition of variables specified by the structural equations and the correlations among the error terms. It is often thought that the path diagram is (...) nothing more than a heuristic device for illustrating the assumptions of the model. However, in this paper, we will show how path diagrams can be used to solve a number of important problems in structural equation modelling. (shrink)
Diagrams have distinctive characteristics that make them an effective medium for communicating research findings, but they are even more impressive as tools for scientific reasoning. Focusing on circadian rhythm research in biology to explore these roles, we examine diagrammatic formats that have been devised (a) to identify and illuminate circadian phenomena and (b) to develop and modify mechanistic explanations of these phenomena.
Feynman diagrams: conceptual tools for theoretical physicists Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9580-y Authors Laurie M. Brown, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60201, USA Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
Mario Savio is widely known as the first spokesman for the Free Speech Movement. Having spent the summer of 1964 as a civil rights worker in segregationist Mississippi, Savio returned to the University of California at a time when students throughout the country were beginning to mobilize in support of racial justice and against the deepening American involvement in Vietnam. His moral clairty, his eloquence, and his democratic style of leadership inspired thousands of fellow Berkeley students to protest university regulations (...) that had severely limited political speech and activity on campus. The nonviolent campaign culminated in the largest mass arrest in American history, drew widespread faculty support, and resulted in a revision of university rules to permit political speech and organizing. This significant advance for student freedom rapidly spread to countless other colleges and universities across the country. Mario Savio went on to become a college teacher of physics, logic, and philosophy, to speak and organize in favor of immigrant rights and affirmative action and against U.S. intervention in Central America. He died on November 6, 1996, in the middle of a struggle against California State University fee hikes that hurt working-class students. Savio had submitted this article to the Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic before he died. Final revisions were made by Philip Clayton with the assistance of Mario's colleagues at Sonoma State University. As reader for the Journal, George Englebretsen not only provided an extensive commentary on the article--much of which has been incorporated here--but also assisted in the difficult task of making revisions without changing the substance of Mario's style or thought. It is fitting that this, Savio's final publication, would be pedagogical in orientation. For him, moral considerations were no less pertinent in logic than in philosophy's less abstract fields. The usual student confusion with Venn diagrams led him to develop the new pictorial device presented in the following pages, which he believed was more sensitive to user psychology. It is hard to miss the political overtones in Savio's closing worry that in Venn diagrams "information of real significance may occasionally appear hidden and distorted." The decision by the Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic to publish this piece posthumously is a testimony that logic, no less than other fields of philosophy, can be a tool of free speech and political change--as powerful in its way as the rhetorical brilliance of that young man standing on top of a police car who launched a worldwide movement with the words, "There is a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, you can't take part.". (shrink)
In this paper I begin by extending two results of Solovay; the first characterizes the possible Turing degrees of models of True Arithmetic (TA), the complete first-order theory of the standard model of PA, while the second characterizes the possible Turing degrees of arbitrary completions of P. I extend these two results to characterize the possible Turing degrees of m-diagrams of models of TA and of arbitrary complete extensions of PA. I next give a construction showing that the conditions (...) Solovay identified for his characterization of degrees of models of arbitrary completions of PA cannot be dropped (I showed that these conditions cannot be simplified in the paper. (shrink)
The paper shows that a particular point raised by Schröder – that Frege's conceptual notation fails to be modelled on the formula language of arithmetic – is based on a misunderstanding. After pointing out what seems to be the most advantageous aspect of Frege's diagrams, it gives a serious reason for their eventual cast-off.
The aim of this article is to explain why knot diagrams are an effective notation in topology. Their cognitive features and epistemic roles will be assessed. First, it will be argued that different interpretations of a figure give rise to different diagrams and as a consequence various levels of representation for knots will be identified. Second, it will be shown that knot diagrams are dynamic by pointing at the moves which are commonly applied to them. For this (...) reason, experts must develop a specific form of enhanced manipulative imagination, in order to draw inferences from knot diagrams by performing epistemic actions. Moreover, it will be argued that knot diagrams not only can promote discovery, but also provide evidence. This case study is an experimentation ground to evaluate the role of space and action in making inferences by reasoning diagrammatically. (shrink)
After determining one set of skills that we hoped our students were learning in the introductory philosophy class at Carnegie Mellon University, we designed an experiment, performed twice over the course of two semesters, to test whether they were actually learning these skills. In addition, there were four different lectures of this course in the Spring of 2004, and five in the Fall of 2004; and the students of Lecturer I (in both semesters) were taught the material using argument (...) class='Hi'>diagrams as a tool to aid understanding and critical evaluation, while the other students were taught using more traditional methods. We were interested in whether this tool would help the students develop the skills we hoped they would master in this course. In each lecture, the students were given a pre-test at the beginning of the semester, and a structurally identical post-test at the end. We determined that the students did develop the skills in which we were interested over the course of the semester. We also determined that the students who were able to construct argument diagrams gained significantly more than the other students. We conclude that learning how to construct argument diagrams improves a student's ability to analyze, comprehend, and evaluate arguments. (shrink)
Concern about high-profile ethical lapses by business managers has led to an increasing emphasis on ethics instruction in business schools. Various pedagogical methods are used to expose business students to real-world ethical dilemmas, yet students may not readily grasp the linkages between ethical theories and dilemmas to identify possible ethical solutions. Venn diagrams are a valuable instructional tool in business ethics classes when used with other teaching methodologies such as case studies. We describe how the use of Venn (...) class='Hi'>diagrams assists students in visualizing the key points of and the connections between ethical theories and dilemmas to shed light on possible ethical solutions. Examples of teaching exercises are provided along with ideas for future research in the use of Venn diagrams in activating moral imagination and improving ethical reasoning. Overall, positive student reactions to the introduction of Venn diagrams in business ethics classrooms support the use of this methodology. (shrink)
This commentary is intended to illuminate Gold's & Stoljar's main contentions by exploiting a favorite comparison, namely, that between biology and electronics. Roughly, and leaving out Darwinian theory and the like, biology is physics and chemistry plus natural history just as electronics is physics plus wiring diagrams. Natural history (even that discovered by sophisticated apparatus such as electron microscopes) contains generalizations, not laws. Psychology and cognitive science typically give more abstract explanations, as do “block diagrams” in electronics, (...) and are less dispensable. (shrink)
This paper, we propose a modal logic satisfying minimal requirements for reasoning about diagrams via collection of sets and relations between them, following Harel's proposal. We first give an axiomatics of such a theory and then provide its Kripke semantics. Then we extend previous works of ours in order to obtain a decision procedure based on tableaux for this logic. Beside soundness and completeness of our tableaux, we manage to define a strategy of rule application ensuring termination by extending (...) the usual loop test of modal logic S4 to whole sub-structures of the model being computed. (shrink)
When the German mathematician Hermann Minkowski first introduced the space-time diagrams that came to be associated with his name, the idea of picturing motion by geometric means, holding time as a fourth dimension of space, was hardly new. But the pictorial device invented by Minkowski was tailor-made for a peculiar variety of space-time: the one imposed by the kinematics of Einstein’s special theory of relativity, with its unified, non-Euclidean underlying geometric structure. By plo tting two or more reference frames (...) in relative motion on the same picture, Minkowski managed to exhibit the geometric basis of such relativistic phenomena as time dilation, length contraction or the dislocation of simultaneity. These disconcerting effects were shown to result from arbitrary projections within four-dimensional space-time. In that respect, Minkowski diagrams are fundamentally different from ordinary space-time graphs. The best way to understand their specificity is to realize how productively ambiguous they are. (shrink)