Kuhn's alleged taxonomic interpretation of incommensurability is grounded on an ill defined notion of untranslatability and is hence radically incomplete. To supplement it, I reconstruct Kuhn's taxonomic interpretation on the basis of a logical-semantic theory of taxonomy, a semantic theory of truth-value, and a truth-value conditional theory of cross-language communication. According to the reconstruction, two scientific languages are incommensurable when core sentences of one language, which have truth values when considered within its own context, lack truth values when considered (...) within the context of the other due to the unmatchable taxonomic structures underlying them. So constructed, Kuhn's mature interpretation of incommensurability does not depend upon the notion of truth-preserving (un)translatability, but rather depends on the notion of truth-value-status-preserving cross-language communication. The reconstruction makes Kuhn's notion of incommensurability a well grounded, tenable and integrated notion. (shrink)
Mary Winsor (2003) argues against the received view that pre-Darwinian taxonomy was characterized mainly by essentialism. She argues, instead, that the methods of pre-Darwinian taxonomists, in spite of whatever their beliefs, were that of clusterists, so that the received view, propagated mainly by certain modern biologists and philosophers of biology, should at last be put to rest as a myth. I argue that shes right when it comes to higher taxa, but wrong when it comes the most important category (...) of all, the species category. (shrink)
Ethical challenges that arise within healthcare delivery institutions are currently categorized as either clinical or organizational, based on the type of issue. Despite this common binary issue-based methodology, empirical study and increasing academic dialogue indicate that a clear line cannot easily be drawn between organizational and clinical ethics. Disagreement around end-of-life treatments, for example, often spawn value differences amongst parties at both organizational and clinical levels and requires a resolution to address both the case at hand and large-scale underlying system-level (...) confounders. I refer to issues that contain elements of both clinical and organizational issues as hybrids and propose a new taxonomy to characterize hybrid cases. I contend that salient contextual features of an ethical issue, such as where it is identified, who it impacts and where it is ideally resolved in relation to its scope of impact, should inform procedure. Implementation of a Hybrid taxonomy viewing ethical issues as existing on a continuum furthers that end. The primary goals are to 1) systematize thinking about ethical issues that arise within healthcare delivery institutions and 2) allow the content of the ethical challenge to drive the process, rather than continuing to rely on the traditional binary issue-based choice. Failure to capture the complexity of hybrid situations perpetuates incomplete information and ultimately an inchoate resolution that creates more questions than answers. (shrink)
Many recent cognitive studies reveal that human cognition is inherently perceptual, sharing systems with perception at both the conceptual and the neural levels. This paper introduces Barsalou's theory of perceptual symbols and explores its implications for philosophy of science. If perceptual symbols lie in the heart of conceptual processing, the process of attribute selection during concept representation, which is critical for defining similarity and thus for comparing taxonomies, can no longer be determined solely by background beliefs. The analogous nature of (...) perceptual symbols and the spatial nature of intraconceptual relations impose new constraints on attribute selection. These constraints help people with different background beliefs select compatible attributes, which constitute a common "platform" for taxonomy comparison. (shrink)
What does it look like when a group of scientists set out to re-envision an entire field of biology in symbolic and formal terms? I analyze the founding and articulation of Numerical Taxonomy between 1950 and 1970, the period when it set out a radical new approach to classification and founded a tradition of mathematics in systematic biology. I argue that introducing mathematics in a comprehensive way also requires re-organizing the daily work of scientists in the field. Numerical taxonomists (...) sought to establish a mathematical method for classification that was universal to every type of organism, and I argue this intrinsically implicated them in a qualitative re-organization of the work of all systematists. I also discuss how Numerical Taxonomy’s re-organization of practice became entrenched across systematic biology even as opposing schools produced their own competing mathematical methods. In this way, the structure of the work process became more fundamental than the methodological theories that motivated it. (shrink)
Although naming biological clades is a major activity in taxonomy, little attention has been paid to what these names actually refer to. In philosophy, definite descriptions have long been considered equivalent to the meaning of names and biological taxonomy is a scientific application of these ideas. One problem with definite descriptions as the meanings of names is that the name will refer to whatever fits the description rather than the intended individual (clade). Recent proposals for explicit phylogenetic definitions (...) of clade names suffer from similar problems and we argue that clade names cannot be defined since they lack intension. Furthermore we stress the importance of tree-thinking for phylogenetic reference to work properly. (shrink)
The word ``deme'' was coined by the botanists J.S.L. Gilmour and J.W.Gregor in 1939, following the pattern of J.S. Huxley's ``cline''. Its purposewas not only to rationalize the plethora of terms describing chromosomaland genetic variation, but also to reduce hostility between traditionaltaxonomists and researchers on evolution, who sometimes scorned eachother's understanding of species. A multi-layered system of compoundterms based on deme was published by Gilmour and J. Heslop-Harrison in1954 but not widely used. Deme was adopted with a modified meaning byzoologists (...) leading the evolutionary synthesis – Huxley, Simpson, Wright,and Mayr. Connections are shown between Gilmour's ideas around definingthe deme, his role in founding the Systematics Association, and his chapter``Taxonomy and Philosophy'' in the book The New Systematics. Thishistorical episode raises questions about the role of carefully-definedwords in scientific practice. (shrink)
The reputations of scientists among their contemporaries depend not only on accomplishment, but also on interactions affected by influence and personality. The historical lore of most fields of scientific endeavor preserve these reputations, often through the identification of founders, innovators, and prolific workers whose contributions are considered fundamental to progress in the field. Historians frequently rely on the historical lore of scientists to guide their studies of the development of ideas, exhibiting justifiable caution in reassessing reputations in the light of (...) current knowledge. However, the transmission of historical lore can obscure the relative importance of accomplishment, influence and personality in shaping contemporary reputations, leaving the historian to either accept reputations at face value or attempt to reconstruct the context in which they were created. The science of taxonomy, because of its rules of priority, leaves a relatively accurate record of historical accomplishment through the persistence of taxa in catalogues and faunal guides. These records allow the modern historian an unbiased means to assess the relative accomplishments of historical figures and therefore a means to critically reassess reputations independent of personality and influence. In the historical lore of North American ichthyology, Louis Agassiz at Harvard and Spencer Baird at the Smithsonian emerge as central figures in the early development of the field during the mid-1800s, contributing not only through the quality and quantity of their science, but also through their roles as institutional leaders and mentors to workers who followed. Charles Girard, originally a student of Agassiz's and later a coworker with Baird, receives little notice in the history of ichthyology, and his reputation is that of a minor player in the initial description of the North American fish fauna, and one whose work appears to have been flawed or even careless when compared to his contemporaries. However, a review of both contemporary and modern taxonomic works reveals that Girard's productivity far exceeded that of either Agassiz or Baird. Furthermore, an examination of the tendency of Girard and his contemporaries to introduce synonymous names into the literature, which might reflect careless or uncritical work, suggests that Girard was among the more accomplished workers of his era, including Agassiz and Baird. Girard's low ranking in the folklore of North American ichthyology, therefore, can not be attributed to discernible shortcomings in his scientific work, but rather to a public and private campaign of criticism waged by Agassiz after Girard's departure from Harvard. While Agassiz's dispute with Girard stemmed from their personal interactions, he expressed them as criticisms of Girard's work, and thus helped shape Girard's scientific reputation as it has been transmitted through the lore of ichthyology. This case study reveals how scientific reputation may not always rest on accomplishment, but can be influenced by personal interactions obscured by time but nonetheless important to history. (shrink)
This paper argues that the many and various conceptions of consciousness propounded by cognitive scientists and philosophers can all be understood as constituted with reference to four fundamental sorts of criterion: epistemic (concerned with kinds of consciousness), semantic (dealing with orders of consciousness), physiological (reflecting states of consciousness), and pragmatic (seeking to capture types of consciousness). The resulting four-fold taxonomy, intended to be exhaustive, suggests that all of the distinct varieties of consciousness currently encountered in cognitive neuroscience, the philosophy (...) of mind, clinical psychology, and other related fields ultimately refer to a unified natural process, analysed under four general aspects. The proposed taxonomy will, it is hoped, possess sufficient clarity to serve as a sound theoretical framework for further scientific studies, and to count as a significant step in the direction of a properly formulated unified concept of consciousness. (shrink)
This paper discusses the current initiatives on error and adverse events within healthcare, with a particular focus on the NHS, within the context of health policy. One of the key features of the paper is the proposal for an emergent taxonomy of the medical error literature, developed from the ideologies and rationales that underpin their approaches. This taxonomy provides details of three categories—empiricists, organisational rationalists and reformers of professional culture—and these act as an organising framework for the exploration (...) of the potential consequences of current policy on errors and adverse events. This discussion highlights the tension between optimising health outcomes for patients and managing the health system as effectively as possible. In particular, the inherent tension between explicit managerial formulations of risk and implicit risk management strategies associated with medical professionalism are considered. (shrink)
Three recent, influential critiques (Stich 1978; Fodor 1981c; Block 1980) have argued that various tasks on the agenda for computational psychology put conflicting pressures on its theoretical constructs. Unless something is done, the inevitable result will be confusion or outright incoherence. Stich, Fodor, and Block present different versions of this worry and each proposes a different remedy. Stich wants the central notion of belief to be jettisoned if it cannot be shown to be sound. Fodor tries to reduce confusion in (...) computational psychology by dismissing some putative tasks as impossible. Block argues that the widespread faith in functionalism is just not warranted. I argue that all these critiques are misguided because they depend on holding cognitive psychology to taxonomic standards that other sciences routinely rise above. (shrink)
All 2 × 2 games are classified into eight configurations, following three natural criteria, and prototypes given for each, especially as concerns the Newcomb and chain-store paradoxes. Two pseudo-dynamic properties, move priority and dynamic inconsistency, are examined in that framework, as well as more specifically, the problem of the origin of social institutions.
Amidst the many brain events evoked by a visual stimulus, which are specifically associated with conscious perception, and which merely reflect non-conscious processing? Several recent neuroimaging studies have contrasted conscious and non-conscious visual processing, but their results appear inconsistent. Some support a correlation of conscious perception with early occipital events, others with late parieto-frontal activity. Here we attempt to make sense of those dissenting results. On the basis of a minimal neuro-computational model, the global neuronal workspace hypothesis, we propose a (...)taxonomy which distinguishes between vigilance and access to conscious report, as well as between subliminal, preconscious and conscious processing. We suggest that these distinctions map onto different neural mechanisms, and that conscious perception is systematically associated with a sudden surge of parieto-frontal activity causing top-down amplification. (shrink)
When, if ever, can healthcare provider's lay claim to knowing what is best for their patients? In this paper, I offer a taxonomy of clinical disagreements. The taxonomy, I argue, reveals that healthcare providers often can lay claim to knowing what is best for their patients, but that oftentimes, they cannot do so *as* healthcare providers.
A pluralistic view of psychiatric classification is defended, according to which psychiatric categories take a variety of structural forms. An ordered taxonomy of these forms—non-kinds, practical kinds, fuzzy kinds, discrete kinds, and natural kinds—is presented and exemplified. It is argued that psychiatric categories cannot all be understood as pragmatically grounded, and at least some reflect naturally occurring discontinuities without thereby representing natural kinds. Even if essentialist accounts of mental disorders are generally mistaken, they are not implied whenever a psychiatric (...) category that is not pragmatically grounded is posited. (shrink)
The goal of this paper is to develop a systematic taxonomy of cognitive artifacts, i.e., human-made, physical objects that functionally contribute to performing a cognitive task. First, I identify the target domain by conceptualizing the category of cognitive artifacts as a functional kind: a kind of artifact that is defined purely by its function. Next, on the basis of their informational properties, I develop a set of related subcategories in which cognitive artifacts with similar properties can be grouped. In (...) this taxonomy, I distinguish between three taxa, those of family, genus, and species. The family includes all cognitive artifacts without further specifying their informational properties. Two genera are then distinguished: representational and non-representational (or ecological) cognitive artifacts. These genera are further divided into species. In case of representational artifacts, these species are iconic, indexical, or symbolic. In case of ecological artifacts, these species are spatial or structural. Within species, token artifacts are identified. The proposed taxonomy is an important first step towards a better understanding of the range and variety of cognitive artifacts and is a helpful point of departure, both for conceptualizing how different artifacts augment or impair cognitive performance and how they transform and are integrated into our cognitive system and practices. (shrink)
I argue that a virtue ethics takes virtue to be more basic than rightness and at least as basic as goodness. My account is Aristotelian because it avoids the excessive inclusivity of Martha Nussbaum's account and the deficient inclusivity of Gary Watson's account. I defend the account against the objection that Aristotle does not have a virtue ethics by its lights, and conclude with some remarks on moral taxonomy.
This paper considers two recent arguments that structure should not be regarded as the fundamental individuating property of proteins. By clarifying both what it might mean for certain properties to play a fundamental role in a classification scheme and the extent to which structure plays such a role in protein classification, I argue that both arguments are unsound. Because of its robustness, its importance in laboratory practice, and its explanatory centrality, primary structure should be regarded as the fundamental distinguishing characteristic (...) of protein taxonomy. (shrink)
The question of whether biologists should continue to use the Linnaean hierarchy is a hotly debated issue. Invented before the introduction of evolutionary theory, Linnaeus's system of classifying organisms is based on outdated theoretical assumptions, and is thought to be unable to provide accurate biological classifications. Marc Ereshefsky argues that biologists should abandon the Linnaean system and adopt an alternative that is more in line with evolutionary theory. He traces the evolution of the Linnaean hierarchy from its introduction to the (...) present. He illustrates how the continued use of this system hampers our ability to classify the organic world, and then goes on to make specific recommendations for a post-Linnaean method of classification. Accessible to a wide range of readers by providing introductory chapters to the philosophy of classification and the taxonomy of biology, the book will interest both scholars and students of biology and the philosophy of science. (shrink)
Many types of part-whole relations have been proposed in the literature to aid the conceptual modeller to choose the most appropriate type, but many of those relations lack a formal specification to give clear and unambiguous semantics to them. To remedy this, a formal taxonomy of types of mereological and meronymic part-whole relations is presented that distinguishes between transitive and intransitive relations and the kind of entity types that are related. The demand to use it effectively brings afore new (...) requirements for automated reasoning over a hierarchy of relations. To ensure logically and ontologically correct inferencing over both the class and role hierarchy, the new reasoning service RBox compatibility for Description Logics reasoners is introduced. The proposed combination of formal semantics and the new reasoning service will improve the representation of the application domain when using part-whole relations in conceptual models and ontologies. (shrink)
The presentation of analogical arguments in the critical thinking literature fails to reflect cognitive research on analogy. Part of the problem is that these treatments of analogy do not address counterarguments, an important aspect of the analysis of analogical argumentation. In this paper, I present a taxonomy of four counterarguments, false analogy, misanalogy, disanalogy, and counteranalogy, analyzed along two dimensions, orientation and effect. The counterarguments are treated in the framework of the multiconstraint theory of analogy (Holyoak and Thagard, 1995). (...) This framework is also extended to account for the evidence brought to light by the consideration of counterarguments. The result is a psychologically motivated treatment of analogical arguments that will be useful both for critical and pedagogical purposes. (shrink)
There has been a significant amount of uncertainty and controversy over the prospects for general knowledge in ecology. Environmental decision makers have begun to despair of ecology's capacity to provide anything more than case by case guidance for the shaping of environmental policy. Ecologists themselves have become suspicious of the pursuit of the kind of genuine nomothetic knowledge that appears to be the hallmark of other scientific domains. Finally, philosophers of biology have contributed to this retreat from generality by suggesting (...) that there really are no laws in biology. This paper addresses these issues by providing a framework for thinking about general knowledge claims in ecology. It introduces a philosophical taxonomy that classifies generalizations into three broad categories – phenomenological, causal and theoretical. It then turns to the difficult problem of laws, arguing that, while there are probably no laws as that term has been understood in philosophy of science, it doesn't follow that everything in ecology is equally contingent. A mechanism for recognizing degrees of contingency in ecological generalizations is developed. The paper concludes by examining the implications of the analysis for the controversies noted at the outset. (shrink)
We discuss the impact of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) on phylogenetic reconstruction and taxonomy. We review the power of HGT as a creative force in assembling new metabolic pathways, and we discuss the impact that HGT has on phylogenetic reconstruction. On one hand, shared derived characters are created through transferred genes that persist in the recipient lineage, either because they were adaptive in the recipient lineage or because they resulted in a functional replacement. On the other hand, taxonomic patterns (...) in microbial phylogenies might also be created through biased gene transfer. The agreement between different molecular phylogenies has encouraged interpretation of the consensus signal as reflecting organismal history or as the tree of cell divisions; however, to date the extent to which the consensus reflects shared organismal ancestry and to which it reflects highways of gene sharing and biased gene transfer remains an open question. Preferential patterns of gene exchange act as a homogenizing force in creating and maintaining microbial groups, generating taxonomic patterns that are indistinguishable to those created by shared ancestry. To understand the evolution of higher bacterial taxonomic units, concepts usually applied in population genetics need to be applied. (shrink)
Swedish naturalist Carl von Linné (1707–1778) became known during his lifetime as a "second Adam" because of his taxonomic endeavors. The significance of this epithet was that in Genesis Adam was reported to have named the beasts—an episode that was usually interpreted to mean that Adam possessed a scientific knowledge of nature and a perfect taxonomy. Linnaeus's soubriquet exemplifies the way in which the Genesis narratives of creation were used in the early modern period to give religious legitimacy to (...) scientific activities and to taxonomy in particular. Allusions to Adam's work in the Garden of Eden thus became a way of investing the vocation of the naturalist with religious significance. (shrink)
Much recent scholarly treatment of the theoretical and practical underpinnings of biological taxonomy from the 16 th to the 18 th centuries has failed to adequately consider the importance of the mode of generation of some living entity in the determination of its species membership, as well as in the determination of the ontological profile of the species itself. In this article, I show how a unique set of considerations was brought to bear in the classification of creatures whose (...) species membership was thought to be entirely determined by descent from parents of the same kind, in contrast with creatures whose generation could proceed spontaneously or through budding. Concretely, the relevance of mode of generation to the practice of taxonomy means that we must rethink the role of the early modern botanists in the development of a universal science of applied taxonomy. I argue that the task of classifying ‘higher’ biological kinds—those united, in Kant’s language, through their generative power—is one with its unique set of problems, arising as much from classical anthropology as from natural philosophy, and that the conception of zoological species that emerged in the early modern period was a consequence of these problems, and not primarily of the ‘applied metaphysics’ of classificatory practice. (shrink)
Two periods in the history of logic and philosophy are characterized notably by vivid interest in self-referential paradoxical sentences in general, and Liar sentences in particular: the later medieval period (roughly from the 12th to the 15th century) and the last 100 years. In this paper, I undertake a comparative taxonomy of these two traditions. I outline and discuss eight main approaches to Liar sentences in the medieval tradition, and compare them to the most influential modern approaches to such (...) sentences. I also emphasize the aspects of each tradition that find no counterpart in the other one. It is expected that such a comparison may point in new directions for future research on the paradoxes; indeed, the present analysis allows me to draw a few conclusions about the general nature of Liar sentences, and to identify aspects that would require further investigation. (shrink)
Multiple different understandings and uses exist of what granularity is and how to implement it, where the former influences success of the latter with regards to storing granular data and using granularity for reasoning over the data or information. We propose a taxonomy of types of granularity and discuss for each leaf type how the entities or instances relate within its granular level. Such unambiguous distinctions can guide a conceptual modeler to better distinguish between the types of granularity and (...) the software developer to improve on implementations of granularity. (shrink)
Benjamin S. Bloom and a large committee of educators did extensive research to develop a taxonomy of global educational goals and of ways to measure their achievement in the classroom. The result was a taxonomy of three domains: Cognitive, Affective, and Motor Skills. This paper examines the cognitive and affective domains and applies them to teaching business ethics. Each of the six levels of the cognitive domain is explained. A six-step case method model is used to illustrate how (...) the six cognitive levels might be used and tested in the classroom. The five levels of the affective domain are also described. They are illustrated behaviorally in terms of a student's increasing interest, motivation and commitment to business ethics. (shrink)
Since Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection, the idea of descent with modification came to dominate systematics, and so the study of morphology became subgugated to the reconstruction of phylogenies. Reinstating the organism in the theory of evolution (Ho & Saunders, 1979; Webster & Goodwin, 1982) leads to a project inrational taxonomy (Ho, 1986, 1988a), which attempts to classify biological forms on the basis of transformations on a given dynamical structure.Does rational taxonomy correspond to thenatural system that (...) Linnaeus and his contemporaries as well as all pre-Darwinian morphologists had in mind? Here, we examine how rational taxonomy and the natural system can coincide in the dynamics of processes generating forms during development, which conferexclusivity, genericity androbustness to the forms that do exist. We use the example of segmentation, especially inDrosophila, as an illustration to explore the implications of rational taxonomy for evolution and systematics, and the relationship between ontogeny and phylogeny. (shrink)
This paper examines taxonomy comparison from a cognitive perspective. Arguments are developed by drawing on the results of cognitive psychology, which reveal the cognitive mechanisms behind the practice of taxonomy comparison. The taxonomic change in 19th-century ornithology is also used to uncover the historical practice that ornithologists employed in the revision of the classification of birds. On the basis of cognitive and historical analyses, I argue that incommensurable taxonomies can be compared rationally. Using a frame model to represent (...)taxonomy, I show how rational comparisons were achieved in the historical case through compatible contrast sets and attribute lists. Through analyzing the cognitive processes of classification and concept representation, I further explain how rival taxonomies in the historical case could be rationally compared on ‘platforms’ rooted in such cognitive mechanisms as relational assumptions and preferences for body parts in conceptual processing. (shrink)
Taxonomy Based modeling was applied to describe drivers’ mental models of variable message signs (VMS’s) displayed on expressways. Progress in road telematics has made it possible to introduce variable message signs (VMS’s). Sensors embedded in the carriageway every 500m record certain variables (speed, flow rate, etc.) that are transformed in real time into “driving times” to a given destination if road conditions do not change. VMS systems are auto-regulative Man-Machine (AMMI) systems which incorporate a model of the user: if (...) the traffic flow is too high, then drivers should choose alternative routes. In so doing, the traffic flow should decrease. The model of the user is based on suppositions such as: people do not like to waste time, they fully understand the displayed messages, they trust the displayed values, they know of alternative routes. However, people also have a model of the way the system functions. And if they do not believe the contents of the message, they will not act as expected. (shrink)
Increasingly, taxonomies are being developed and used by industry practitioners to facilitate information interoperability and retrieval. Within a single industrial domain, there exist many taxonomies that are intended for different applications. Industry specific taxonomies often represent the vocabularies that are commonly used by the practitioners. Their jobs are multi-faceted, which include checking for code and regulatory compliance. As such, it will be very desirable if industry practitioners are able to easily locate and browse regulations of interest. In practice, multiple sources (...) of government regulations exist and they are often organized and classified by the needs of the issuing agencies that enforce them rather than the needs of the communities that use them. One way to bridge these two distinct needs is to develop methods and tools that enable practitioners to browse and retrieve government regulations using their own terms and vocabularies, for example, via existing industry taxonomies. The mapping from a single taxonomy to a single regulation is a trivial keyword matching task. We examine a relatedness analysis approach for mapping a single taxonomy to multiple regulations. We then present an approach for mapping multiple taxonomies to a single regulation by measuring the relatedness of concepts. Cosine similarity, Jaccard coefficient and market basket analysis are used to measure the semantic relatedness between concepts from two different taxonomies. Preliminary evaluations of the three relatedness analysis measures are performed using examples from the civil engineering and building industry. These examples illustrate the potential benefits of regulatory usage from the mapping between various taxonomies and regulations. (shrink)
Overcoming our disciplinary aversion to assessment mechanisms allows more possibilities for students to achieve fundamental philosophical skills. My essay discusses the use of Bloom’s taxonomy in a Feminist Philosophy course with detailed examples that demonstrate its efficacy as a learning and assessment tool that is particularly suited to philosophy, as well as how critical philosophy in general, and feminist philosophy in particular, is an ideal subject to help students gain critical thinking skills.
This paper introduces current acoustic theories relating to the phenomenology of sound as a framework for interrogating concepts relating to the ecologies of acoustic and landscape phenomena in a Japanese stroll garden. By applying the technique of Formal Concept Analysis, a partially ordered lattice of garden objects and attributes is visualized as a means to investigate the relationship between elements of the taxonomy.
Experimental taxonomy was a diverse area of research, and botanists who helped develop it were motivated by a variety of concerns. While experimental taxonomy was never totally a taxonomic enterprise, improvement in classification was certainly one major motivation behind the research. Hall's and Clements' belief that experimental methods added more objectivity to classification was almost universally accepted by experimental taxonomists. Such methods did add a new dimension to taxonomy — a dimension that field and herbarium studies, however (...) rigorous, could not duplicate. Nonetheless, experimental techniques were never completely divorced from traditional taxonomic methods. In practice, all experimental taxonomists employed a combination of descriptive and experimental methods. Most researchers freely acknowledged a debt to traditional taxonomy. Furthermore, the greater rigor of twentieth-century taxonomy was not due entirely to experimentalism. Both the experimental and descriptive aspects of taxonomy were improved by the increased use of quantitative methods, particularly statistics.52From the beginning, a number of experimental taxonomists were interested primarily in classification. But many approached their research from fields other than taxonomy. These botanists were concerned primarily with ecological and genetic problems rather than with classification. There is little indication that they drew a sharp distinction: for example, taxonomic and cytogenetic conclusions were interwoven in Babcock and Stebbins' 1938 study of Crepis 53 (this was even more true of Babcock's final mongraph on the genus, published in 1947). Similarly, the extensive series of monographs, “Experimental Studies on the Nature of Species,” initiated by the Carnegie Institution group in 1940 combined ecological, cytogenetic, and taxonomic conclusions. Indeed, the significance of the major projects completed by experimental taxonomists was largely due to the fact that they were comprehensive studies rather than strictly taxonomic or cytogenetic.In a general sense, the primary motivation behind much of experimental taxonomy was evolutionary. Beginning in the second decade of the century Hall and Clements exhorted taxonomists to take an explicitly evolutionary perspective on research. Hall undoubtedly spoke for the majority of experimental taxonomists when he stated, “If there be anything at all to organic evolution, then taxonomy is dealing with the products of evolution and it is this that gives to taxonomy both its highest mission and its greatest responsibility.”54Aside from a common interest in evolution, however, the theoretical orientations of experimental taxonomists were varied. This diversity is strikingly illustrated by the evolutionary views of members of the Carnegie Institution research group. Experimental taxonomy was initiated by Clements as one aspect of his Lamarckian study of adaptation and speciation. In contrast, Hall's research was inspired by a broad concern for evolutionary problems. Hall rarely referred to specific evolutionary mechanisms; rather, he applied a general conception of evolutionary processes to deduce phylogenetic relationships. His later associates at the Carnegie Institution explicitly dissociated themselves from Clements' theoretical framework. The neo-Darwinian interpretations of adaptation and speciation presented by Clausen, Keck, and Hiesey could hardly have been more different than those of Clements. However, this major shift in theoretical orientation should not obscure significant similarities between the research of Clements and later Carnegie workers. In terms of research problems and methodology, the first volume of “Experimental Studies on the Nature of Species” was an extension of the Clementsian research program. Clausen, Keck, and Hiesey's monograph was the mature discussion of transplant experimentation that Clements had very tentatively initiated during the first decades of the twentieth century. The bond that linked the members of the Carnegie Institution research group to experimental taxonomists in general was one of shared methodology rather than common theoretical orientation. While Clements' evolutionary views were eventually repudiated, his enthusiasm for innovative experimental methods was shared by later workers.The development of experimental taxonomy faced significant problems. During the period 1920–1950 this area of botanical research remained a hybrid discipline. The aims and scope of experimental taxonomy were never articulated in a completely unified manner. Consequently, even among experimental taxonomists, there were disagreements over the relation of their research to other botanical endeavors. Even though experimental taxonomy had close ties with general taxonomy, a number of experimental taxonomists questioned the “taxonomic” nature of their research55. Even to the extent that this hybrid discipline could be identified as a branch of taxonomy, problems arose. Taxonomists, as we have seen, were justifiably skeptical of what appeared to be a rapid influx of untested methods and ideas. Experimental taxonomists were not merely incorporating well-accepted methods from ecology and cytogenetics; during the period 1920–1950 the fields from which experimental taxonomists borrowed were themselves undergoing major theoretical and methodological changes. Despite problems and conflicts, experimental taxonomists did contribute improvements to classification. Furthermore, they made significant contributions to plant ecology and evolutionary genetics.The development of experimental taxonomy indicates that twentieth-century botanists were not necessarily isolated in naturalist and experimentalist camps. The joint session of taxonomists, cytologists, and geneticists at the 1926 International Congress of Plant Sciences indicates communication among specialists fairly early in the century. The papers and commentaries presented during this session do not reveal the hostility and intolerance that supposedly characterized encounters between experimentalists and naturalists. Nor do they suggest incompatible conceptual worlds separating geneticists and taxonomists.Discussions between taxonomists and other specialists were not limited to a single international congress. Particularly during the 1930s discussions among specialists appear to have been fairly widespread. Groups such as the Biosystematists and the Society for the Study of Systematics in Relation to General Biology served as forums for discussion among biologists from a variety of disciplines. The naturalist-experimentalist dichotomy tends to obscure the broad research interests of a number of prominent twentieth-century botanists. Most of the experimental taxonomists cannot be characterized adequately as either naturalists or experimentalists. Traditionally trained taxonomists such as Hall, Keck, and Turrill throughout their careers participated in both experimental and herbarium research. And a number of specialists in fields other than taxonomy took an active interest in taxonomic problems, not necessarily limited to experimental aspects. For example, Anderson suggested a number of innovations to make herbarium collections more amenable to statistical analysis.This historical study of experimental taxonomy indicates a different relationship between experimentalism and taxonomy than that portrayed by the naturalist-versus-experimentalist dichotomy. F. E. Clements originated experimental taxonomy as a revolt against descriptive botany. In retrospect, this revolution was not vigorously waged and was not successfully completed. Experimental taxonomy was never an entirely experimental approach to botanical research. Even the most ardent advocates of experimentalism relied heavily on methods inherited from traditional taxonomy. Moderate exponents of experimental taxonomy stressed the compatibility of experimental methods, field observation, and herbarium techniques. Attempts to fuse cytogenetics, ecology, and taxonomy during the period 1920–1950 resulted in an impressive body of research. However, this fusion constituted neither a repudiation of descriptive botany nor a complete revision of taxonomic theory of practice. (shrink)
We provide a full characterization of computational error states for information systems. The class of errors considered is general enough to include human rational processes, logical reasoning, scientific progress and data processing in some functional programming languages. The aim is to reach a full taxonomy of error states by analysing the recovery and processing of data. We conclude by presenting machine-readable checking and resolve algorithms.
Page is to be congratulated for challenging some misconceptions about neural representation. However, his target article, and the commentaries to it, highlight that the terms “local” and “distributed” are open to misinterpretation. These terms provide a poor description of neural coding strategies and a better taxonomy might resolve some of the issues.
Gamut (1991) and Atlas (1991, 1993, 1996b) showed that the Generalized Quantifier 1only Proper Name1 licenses Negative Polarity Items but fails to be downwards monotonic in Barwise & Cooper's (1981) sense. In Atlas (1996a, in press) I examined Zwarts's (1996, 1998) De Morgan taxonomy for negative Noun Phrases. Two of the four De Morgan entailments used by Zwarts to characterize the negation of negative Noun Phrases express downward monotonicity of the Noun Phrase Q, viz. Q(For G) ⊩ QF& QG, (...) and QF V QG ⊩ Q(F and G). I introduced a connection between a revised Zwartsian De Morgan taxonomy and the familiar concept in Cognitive Linguistics, due to Rosch (1978), and discussed by Lakoff (1987) and Taylor (1995), of ‘prototypicalit’ I argued on philosophical grounds that anti–additive quantifiers were logically ‘prototypical’ negation operators; anti–additive quantifiers are downwards monotonic and closed under disjunction, viz. they satisfy a third De Morgan relationship QF & QG ⊩ Q(F or G). I then hypothesized that the logically prototypical operators were realized in natural language by linguistically and psycho-linguistically prototypical expressions; e. g. no Count Noun is ‘prototypical’, but 1only Proper Name 1 is not; the latter is not downwards monotonic, though it is closed under disjunction, and it licenses Negative Polarity Items. Thus the questions were raised: (a) Are there other negative expressions in the same logical class as 1only Proper Name1 ? (b)Is any one logical De Morgan condition essential for Noun Phrase and Verb Phrase lexically semantic negativity? In this essay I answer those two questions: (á) Yes. (b´] No. The latter answer explains the theoretical importance of a concept like ‘prototypical’ negation in logical semantics, a concept like ‘prototypical’ negativity in lexical semantics, and the Hypothesis that claims that logically prototypical quantifiers are realized in natural language by linguistically prototypical negative Noun Phrases(Atlas 1996a, in press). (shrink)
Even as philosophers increasingly apply their analytical acumen to other subjects of intellectual study, technology is one area relegated to the sidelines. To help dispel such prejudice, this exercise in applied ontology explains why technology invites critical examination, enumerates the generic needs and perceived wants that it fulfills, and then supplies a taxonomy of technological devices individuated in terms of the functional roles that their designers or consumers intend for them. In light of the classificatory scheme developed, I conclude (...) that everything in space and time may be used to realize technological goals, necessitating a more inclusive understanding of technology and thereby a heightened awareness of its pervasive character. (shrink)
Between 1937 and 1940 the Taxonomic Principles Committee of the newly-founded Association for the Study of Systematics in Relation to General Biology (later the Systematics Association) attempted to define the relationship between evolution and taxonomy. The people who took part in the discussion were W.T. Calman, C.R.P. Diver, J.S.L. Gilmour, J.S. Huxley, W.D. Lang, J.R. Norman, R. Melville, O.W. Richards, M.A. Smith, T.A. Sprague, H. Hamshaw Thomas, W.B. Turrill, B.P. Uvarov, A.F. Watkins, E.I. White, and A.J. Wilmott. Most of (...) the botanists asserted that taxonomy was a practical matter to be kept distinct from phylogenetic speculation, and most of the zoologists insisted that taxonomists must strive to represent evolution if they wished to be scientific. The disagreement seemed to be hardening rather than approaching compromise when World War Two stopped the committee's work. (shrink)
Background If trials of therapeutic interventions are to serve society's interests, they must be of high methodological quality and must satisfy moral commitments to human subjects. The authors set out to develop a clinical-trials compendium in which standards for the ethical treatment of human subjects are integrated with standards for research methods. Methods The authors rank-ordered the world's nations and chose the 31 with >700 active trials as of 24 July 2008. Governmental and other authoritative entities of the 31 countries (...) were searched, and 1004 English-language documents containing ethical and/or methodological standards for clinical trials were identified. The authors extracted standards from 144 of those: 50 designated as ‘core’, 39 addressing trials of invasive procedures and a 5% sample (N=55) of the remainder. As the integrating framework for the standards we developed a coherent taxonomy encompassing all elements of a trial's stages. Findings Review of the 144 documents yielded nearly 15 000 discrete standards. After duplicates were removed, 5903 substantive standards remained, distributed in the taxonomy as follows: initiation, 1401 standards, 8 divisions; design, 1869 standards, 16 divisions; conduct, 1473 standards, 8 divisions; analysing and reporting results, 997 standards, four divisions; and post-trial standards, 168 standards, 5 divisions. Conclusions The overwhelming number of source documents and standards uncovered in this study was not anticipated beforehand and confirms the extraordinary complexity of the clinical trials enterprise. This taxonomy of multinational ethical and methodological standards may help trialists and overseers improve the quality of clinical trials, particularly given the globalisation of clinical research. (shrink)
A reading of a sample of taxonomical papers leads to the conclusion that new species identification is both taxonomically plausible and philosophically incoherent. As a result, taxonomy becomes a science that apparently violates a necessary condition of its rationality. It is this apparent violation that is the focus of the philosophical debate, a debate whose goal for taxonomy is theoretical coherence at a global level. In this paper, I assess the appropriateness of this goal.
Almost four decades ago, Kathleen Pearson examined deceptive practices in sport using a distinction between strategic and definitional deception. However, the complexity and dynamic nature of sport is not limited to this dual-categorization of deceptive acts and there are other features of deception in sport unaccounted for in Pearson's constructs. By employing Torres?s elucidation of the structure of skills and Suits's concept of the lusory-attitude, a more thorough taxonomy of in-contest sport deception will be presented. Despite the ubiquitous presence (...) of deception in sport, few scholars have examined this concept in the sport philosophy literature since Pearson?s contribution. This paper hopes to advance a deeper understanding of deceptive practices in competitive sport and also comment on the ethical permissibility of certain sport skills from a moral perspective. (shrink)
Taxonomy Based modeling was applied to describe drivers' mental models of variable message signs (VMS's) displayed on expressways. Progress in road telematics has made it possible to introduce variable message signs (VMS's). Sensors embedded in the carriageway every 500m record certain variables (speed, flow rate, etc.) that are transformed in real time into 'driving times' to a given destination if road conditions do not change. VMS systems are auto-regulative Man-Machine (AMMI) systems which incorporate a model of the user: if (...) the traffic flow is too high, then drivers should choose alternative routes. In so doing, the traffic flow should decrease. The model of the user is based on suppositions such as: people do not like to waste time, they fully understand the displayed messages, they trust the displayed values, they know of alternative routes. However, people also have a model of the way the system functions. And if they do not believe the contents of the message, they will not act as expected. We collected data through interviews with drivers using the critical incidents technique (Flanagan, 1985). Results show that the mental models that drivers have of the way the VMS system works are various but not numerous and that most of them differ from the 'ideal expert' mental model. It is clear that users don't have an adequate model of how the VMS system works and that VMS planners have a model of user behaviour that does not correspond to the behaviour of the drivers we interviewed. Finally, Taxonomy Based Modeling is discussed as a tool for mental model remediation. (shrink)
The 2 × 2 game is the simplest and most commonly employed representation of strategic conflict. The 78 strict ordinal 2 × 2 games have been used as conflict models extensively, and have been related in several different taxonomies. However, interest has recently focussed on the full set of 726 general ordinal games, in which one or both players may have equal preferences for two or more outcomes. This paper describes the development of a practical taxonomy of all 726 (...) ordinal 2 × 2 games. The taxonomy provides for rapid identification of particular games, gives a convenient ordering, is as consistent as possible with previous work, and yet is not tied to any specific solution concepts. As well, definitions of several significant game properties are developed or extended to general ordinal games and applied in conjunction with the taxonomy. (shrink)
Our study provides a review of argument-based scientific literature to address conscientious objections to end-of-life procedures. We also proposed a taxonomy based on this study that might facilitate clarification of this discussion at a basic level. The three clusters of our taxonomy include (1) nonconventional compatibilists that claim that conscientious objection against morally repugnant social conventions is compatible with professional obligation, (2) conventional compatibilists that suggest that conscientious objection against social convention is permissible under certain terms of compromise, (...) and (3) conventional incompatibilists that aver that conscientious objection is incompatible with the privileges and obligations of a health care provider. We conclude with three moments of reflective pause. The first pause reflects on the question of the health of a society's pluralism. The second pause results in suggested practice guidelines for conscientious objection to facilitate cooperation. The final pause reveals the need for further research to uncover a global perspective. (shrink)