A New Logic of Technical Malfunction

Studia Logica 101 (3):547-581 (2013)

Authors
Massimiliano Carrara
University of Padua
Abstract
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, a malfunctioning F is an F; if privative, a malfunctioning F is not an F. An intensional logic is required to raise and answer the question, because modifiers operate directly on properties and not on sets or individuals. This new logic provides the formal tools to reason about technical malfunction by means of a logical analysis of the sentence “a is a malfunctioning F”
Keywords Logic of malfunction  Modification  Simple type theory  Transparent intensional logic  Philosophy of technology  Artefact  Functioning as  Intensional essentialism
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DOI 10.1007/s11225-012-9397-8
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References found in this work BETA

Essence and Modality.Kit Fine - 1994 - Philosophical Perspectives 8:1-16.
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Citations of this work BETA

A Taxonomy of Errors for Information Systems.Giuseppe Primiero - 2014 - Minds and Machines 24 (3):249-273.

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