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  1. Failure: Analysis of an Engineering Concept.L. Del Frate - unknown
    This thesis is an attempt to clarify a concept we are all familiar with, engineers and non-engineers alike. It shows that, behind the first impression of familiarity, there is a wide range of intuitions about failure which are not easily reconciled. While the ensuing ambiguities and lack of clarity may be tolerated in ordinary circumstances, engineers strive for precision and efficiency. These qualities become even more relevant given that engineering activities are increasingly carried out by multidisciplinary and multicultural teams. The (...)
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  • Iterated Privation and Positive Predication.Bjørn Jespersen, Massimiliano Carrara & Marie Duží - 2017 - Journal of Applied Logic 25:S48-S71.
    The standard rule of single privative modification replaces privative modifiers by Boolean negation. This rule is valid, for sure, but also simplistic. If an individual a instantiates the privatively modified property (MF) then it is true that a instantiates the property of not being an F, but the rule fails to express the fact that the properties (MF) and F have something in common. We replace Boolean negation by property negation, enabling us to operate on contrary rather than contradictory properties. (...)
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  • On Malfunctioning Software.Giuseppe Primiero, Nir Fresco & Luciano Floridi - 2015 - Synthese 192 (4):1199-1220.
    Artefacts do not always do what they are supposed to, due to a variety of reasons, including manufacturing problems, poor maintenance, and normal wear-and-tear. Since software is an artefact, it should be subject to malfunctioning in the same sense in which other artefacts can malfunction. Yet, whether software is on a par with other artefacts when it comes to malfunctioning crucially depends on the abstraction used in the analysis. We distinguish between “negative” and “positive” notions of malfunction. A negative malfunction, (...)
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  • On Malfunction, Mechanisms and Malware Classification.Giuseppe Primiero, Frida J. Solheim & Jonathan M. Spring - 2019 - Philosophy and Technology 32 (2):339-362.
    Malware has been around since the 1980s and is a large and expensive security concern today, constantly growing over the past years. As our social, professional and financial lives become more digitalised, they present larger and more profitable targets for malware. The problem of classifying and preventing malware is therefore urgent, and it is complicated by the existence of several specific approaches. In this paper, we use an existing malware taxonomy to formulate a general, language independent functional description of malware (...)
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  • A New Logic of Technical Malfunction.Bjørn Jespersen & Massimiliano Carrara - 2013 - Studia Logica 101 (3):547-581.
    Aim of the paper is to present a new logic of technical malfunction. The need for this logic is motivated by a simple-sounding philosophical question: Is a malfunctioning corkscrew, which fails to uncork bottles, nonetheless a corkscrew? Or in general terms, is a malfunctioning F, which fails to do what Fs do, nonetheless an F? We argue that ‘malfunctioning’ denotes the modifier Malfunctioning rather than a property, and that the answer depends on whether Malfunctioning is subsective or privative. If subsective, (...)
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  • Two Arguments for the Etiological Theory Over the Modal Theory of Biological Function.Brian Leahy & Maximilian Huber - 2017 - Synthese 194 (4).
    This paper contains a positive development and a negative argument. It develops a theory of function loss and shows how this undermines an objection raised against the etiological theory of function in support of the modal theory of function. Then it raises two internal problems for the modal theory of function.
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  • Miscomputation.Nir Fresco & Giuseppe Primiero - 2013 - Philosophy and Technology 26 (3):253-272.
    The phenomenon of digital computation is explained (often differently) in computer science, computer engineering and more broadly in cognitive science. Although the semantics and implications of malfunctions have received attention in the philosophy of biology and philosophy of technology, errors in computational systems remain of interest only to computer science. Miscomputation has not gotten the philosophical attention it deserves. Our paper fills this gap by offering a taxonomy of miscomputations. This taxonomy is underpinned by a conceptual analysis of the design (...)
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  • A Taxonomy of Errors for Information Systems.Giuseppe Primiero - 2014 - Minds and Machines 24 (3):249-273.
    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.
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  • Preliminaries to a Logic of Malfunction.Massimiliano Carrara - 2015 - In Pavel Arazim Michal Dancak (ed.), The Logica Yearbook. College Publications. pp. 33-47.
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