Underlying solar energy development is a fundamental issue of values and individual choices. Where solar energy comes to include such ideas as appropriate decentralized technology, self-sufficiency and autonomy, and a responsibility to conserve and preserve the environment, solar energy can become a channel for exploring alternative values. The requirement here is to view solar energy not as just anotherenergy source maintaining an ever increasing fiow of consumption goods. Rather, solar energy should be viewed as an opportunity for the development of (...) values which expand individual choices through the creative process of the community paradigm. (shrink)
I hope to persuade Charles Fried to think again about his developing views on distributive justice. Since I live at a certain remove from Cambridge, the best I can offer is a hypothetical dialogue with an imaginary person whose views seem, to me at least, of a Friedian inspiration. My central question deals with the way Fried establishes his rights to things he candidly concedes he does not deserve. To present my problems, I shall begin with a simpler case than (...) those – involving kidneys and talents – that Fried makes central to his discussion. Rather than starting with these rather special goods, I find it clarifying to focus first on more garden variety commodities – which, to emphasize their character, I shall call apples. (shrink)
Purely parallel neural networks can model object recognition in brief displays – the same conditions under which illusory conjunctions have been demonstrated empirically. Correcting errors of illusory conjunction is the “tag-assignment” problem for a purely parallel processor: the problem of assigning a spatial tag to nonspatial features, feature combinations, and objects. This problem must be solved to model human object recognition over a longer time scale. Our model simulates both the parallel processes that may underlie illusory conjunctions and the serial (...) processes that may solve the tag-assignment problem in normal perception. One component of the model extracts pooled features and another provides attentional tags that correct illusory conjunctions. Our approach addresses two questions: How can objects be identified from simultaneously attended features in a parallel, distributed representation? How can the spatial selectional requirements of such an attentional process be met by a separation of pathways for spatial and nonspatial processing? Our analysis of these questions yields a neurally plausible simulation of tag assignment based on synchronizing feature processing activity in a spatial focus of attention. (shrink)
Morphological elements, or structures, are sorted into four categories depending on their level of anatomical isolation and the presence or absence of intrinsically identifying characteristics. These four categories are used to highlight the difficulties with the concept of structure and our ability to identify or define structures. The analysis is extended to the concept of homology through a discussion of the methodological and philosophical problems of the current concept of homology. It is argued that homology is fundamentally a similarity based (...) concept rather than a phylogenetic concept, and a proposal is put forth to return to a comparative context for homology. It is shown that for both the concepts of structure and homology ana priori assumption of stable underlying patterns (i.e. archetypes) is essential. (shrink)
Jean-Jacques Rousseau's Discourse on the Origin and the Foundations of Inequality is now recognized to have played a fundamental role in the shaping of Scottish Enlightenment political thought. Yet despite some excellent studies of Rousseau's influence on Adam Smith, his impact on Smith's contemporary, Adam Ferguson, has not been examined in detail. This article reassesses Rousseau's legacy in eighteenth-century Scotland by focusing on Ferguson's critique of Rousseau in his Essay on the History of Civil Society, his History of the Progress (...) and Termination of the Roman Republic, and his lectures and published writings in moral philosophy. Ferguson's differences from Rousseau were more pronounced than is sometimes assumed. Not only did Ferguson offer one of the most substantial eighteenth-century refutations of the Genevan's thinking on sociability, nature, art, and culture, he also provided an alternative to the theoretical history of the state set out in the Discourse on Inequality. (shrink)
In three parts, this volume in the AP-LS series explores the phenomena of captivity and risk management, guided and informed by the theory, method, and policy of psychological jurisprudence. The authors present a controversial thesis that demonstrates how the forces of captivity and risk management are sustained by several interdependent "conditions of control." These conditions impose barriers to justice and set limits on citizenship for one and all. Situated at the nexus of political/social theory, mental health law and jurisprudential ethics, (...) the book examines and critiques constructs such as offenders and victims; self and society; therapeutic and restorative; health; harm; and community. So, too, are three "total confinement" case law data sets on which this analysis is based. The volume stands alone in its efforts to systematically "diagnose" the moral reasoning lodged within prevailing judicial opinions that sustain captivity and risk management practices impacting: (1) the rights of juveniles found competent to stand criminal trial, the mentally ill placed in long-term disciplinary isolation, and sex offenders subjected to civil detention and community re-entry monitoring; (2) the often unmet needs of victims; and (3) the demands of an ordered society. Carefully balancing sophisticated insights with concrete and cutting-edge applications, the book concludes with a series of provocative, yet practical, recommendations for future research and meaningful reform within institutional practice, programming, and policy. (shrink)
Kris McDaniel argues that there are different ways in which things exist. For instance, past things don't exist in the same way as present things. Numbers don't exist in the same way as physical objects; nor do holes, which are real, but less real than what they are in. McDaniel's theory of being illuminates a wide range of metaphysical topics.
The ultramodern condition represents the "third wave" in postmodernist-inspired philosophy and cultural practice. Two of ultramodernism's critical theoretical components are the human/social forces, flows, and assemblages that sustain transgression; and the human/social intensities, fluctuations, and thresholds that make transcendence possible as both will and way. In the ultramodern age, then, transcendence is about overcoming and transforming the conditions (i.e., forces, flows, and assemblages) that co-produce harm-generating (i.e., transgressive) tendencies. This manuscript problematizes transgression by way of ultramodern theory. This critical investigation (...) represents "the phenomenology of the shadow," or the ultramodern philosophy of harm. To contextualize this phenomenology and philosophy, the intellectual history of ultramodern thought is recounted. This includes a review of the shadow construct by way of its prominent socio-cultural, psychoanalytic, and political-economic currents; and a chronicling of the reification process (regarding risk, captivity, and harm) since the modernist era (i.e., the industrial revolution). The article concludes with some very speculative observations concerning "the phenomenology of the stranger," or the ultramodern philosophy of transcendence as both will and way. (shrink)
Suppose that a material object is gunky: all of its parts are located in space, and each of its parts has a proper part. Does it follow from this hypothesis that the space in which that object resides must itself be gunky? I argue that it does not. There is room for gunky objects in a space that decomposes without remainder into mereological simples.
Recently, I’ve championed the doctrine that fundamentally different sorts of things exist in fundamentally different ways.1 On this view, what it is for an entity to be can differ across ontological categories.2 Although historically this doctrine was very popular, and several important challenges to this doctrine have been dealt with, I suspect that contemporary metaphysicians will continue to treat this view with suspicion until it is made clearer when one is warranted in positing different modes of existence.3 I address this (...) concern here. The question of when to posit ways of being is closely related to a more general question: when should one think that some philosophically interesting expression is analogous? Accordingly, my strategy here is as follows. First, I briefly explain my interpretation of ontological pluralism, the doctrine that there are ways of being.4 Second, I introduce the notion of an analogous term, and show how, on most ways of implementing ontological pluralism, “existence” is analogous. Third, I discuss two sufficient conditions for when one is warranted in claiming that a philosophically interesting term is analogous. Fourth, I present a series of ontological schemes, each of which satisfies at least one of the sufficient conditions. The upshot is this: if you are attracted to one of these ontologies, you have reason to believe in ways of being. The careful reader will have noted the apparent modesty of my conclusion. Unfortunately, I do not believe that one could ever be rationally required to believe in ways of being. Still, in general a metaphysic is a live option to the extent that it is shown to be rationally permissible to believe. Since the apparent consensus among contemporary analytic metaphysicians is that believing that things can exist in different ways is silly or confused, establishing the rational permissibility of belief in ways of being is a non-trivial task. Let us begin. (shrink)
According to the presentist, it is always the case that the only existing objects are those that exist at the present time, and the only properties and relations that are instantiated are those that are instantiated at the present time. The truth-supervenes-on-being thesis (TSB) is that there can be no difference in what is true without a corresponding difference in what exists and in what properties and relations are instantiated. The truth-supervenes-on-being objection says that presentism cannot accommodate TSB. Lucretianism is (...) the thesis that the world instantiates irreducibly past-tensed properties. Though not popular, it is not entirely uncommon for presentists to endorse Lucretianism as a means to respond to the truth-supervenes-on-being objection. Defenses of Lucretianism itself are still less common. Appropriately up-to-date defenses are lacking altogether. I take up such a defense, arguing that the attacks on Lucretianism fail, and that there is, therefore, no compelling truth-supervenes-on-being objection to presentism. (shrink)
It is argued that “human-centredness” will be an important characteristic of systems that learn tasks from human users, as the difficulties in inductive inference rule out learning without human assistance. The aim of “programming by example” is to create systems that learn how to perform tasks from their human users by being shown examples of what is to be done. Just as the user creates a learning environment for the system, so the system provides a teaching opportunity for the user, (...) and emphasis is placed as much on facilitating successful teaching as on incorporating techniques of machine learning. If systems can “learn” repetitive tasks, their users will have the power to decide for themselves which parts of their jobs should be automated, and teach the system how to do them — reducing their dependence on intermediaries such as system designers and programmers.This paper presents principles for programming by example derived from experience in creating four prototype learners: for technical drawing, text editing, office tasks, and robot assembly. A teaching metaphor (a) enables the user to demonstrate a task by performing it manually, (b) helps to explain the learner's limited capabilities in terms of a persona, and (c) allows users to attribute intentionality. Tasks are represented procedurally, and augmented with constraints. Suitable mechanisms for attention focusing are necessary in order to control inductive search. Hidden features of a task should be made explicit so that the learner need not embark on the huge search entailed by hypothesizing missing steps. (shrink)
In this paper, I formulate, elucidate, and defend a version of modal realism with overlap, the view that objects are literally present at more than one possible world. The version that I defend has several interesting features: it is committed to an ontological distinction between regions of spacetime and material objects; it is committed to compositional pluralism, which is the doctrine that there is more than one fundamental part-whole relation; and it is the modal analogue of endurantism, which is the (...) doctrine that objects persist through time by being wholly present at each moment they are located. (shrink)
Mimetic theory draws support from diverse disciplines in the humanities and social sciences. But arguably Girard would have even more influence if his theory had stronger life data, and one field well positioned to provide such input is psychology. Girard distinguished his thinking from Freud, while critiquing the psychoanalytic tradition more generally, in Book III of Things Hidden since the Foundation of the World1—a work taking the form of an extended dialogue with two psychiatrists. One of these, Jean-Michel Oughourlian, has (...) begun to develop the Girard-inspired practice of "interdividual psychology."2 In Girard's own hands, albeit to a limited degree, mimetic theory has been applied to mental health issues.3... (shrink)
The Philosophical Legacy of Behaviorism is the first book to describe the unique contributions of a behavioral perspective to the major issues of philosophy. Leading behavioral philosophers and psychologists have contributed chapters on: the origins of behaviorism as a philosophy of science; the basic principles of behaviorism; ontology; epistemology; values and ethics; free will, determinism and self-control; and language and verbal behavior. A concluding chapter provides an overview of some scholarly criticisms of behavioral philosophy. Far from espousing a `black box' (...) perspective on human cognition and philosophical reasoning, behaviorism (as derived from the works of B. F. Skinner) represents a contemporary and viable approach to conceptualizing important philosophical and psychological issues. Audience: This work will make an excellent text for upper-level undergraduates and graduate students in the fields of philosophy and psychology, as well as being of interest to established scholars in those disciplines. (shrink)
This book examines the more traditional Christian explanation for why God permits evil in this world and offers an alternative explanation. Key Bible passages are discussed with an application of the alternative position to the great question of why God allows so much evil in this world.
Chow's defense of NHSTP is masterful. His dismissal of including effect sizes (ES) is misplaced, and his failure to discuss the additional practice of reporting proportions of variance explained (PVE) is an important omission. Reporting the results of inferential statistics will be greatly enhanced by including ES and PVE when results are first determined to be statistically significant.