We present a general cognitive architecture that tightly integrates symbolic, spatial, and visual representations. A key means to achieving this integration is allowing cognition to move freely between these modes, using mental imagery. The specific components and their integration are motivated by results from psychology, as well as the need for developing a functional and efficient implementation. We discuss functional benefits that result from the combination of multiple content-based representations and the specialized processing units associated with them. Instantiating this theory, (...) we then discuss the architectural components and processes, and illustrate the resulting functional advantages in two spatially and visually rich domains. The theory is then compared to other prominent approaches in the area. (shrink)
The essence of Hume’s eighteenth-century philosophy was that all the sciences were ‘dependent on the science of man’, and that the foundations of any such science need to rest on experience and observation. This title, first published in 1932, examines in detail how Hume interpreted ‘the science of man’ and how he applied his experimental methodology to humankind’s understanding, passions, social duties, economic activities, religious beliefs and secular history throughout his career. Particular attention is paid to the English, French and (...) Latin sources that shaped Hume’s theories. This is a full and fascinating title, of particular relevance to students with an interest in the philosophy of Hume specifically, as well as the philosophy of human nature and the methodologies applied to its study more generally. (shrink)
An ethic is rational if it can justify itself rationally—that is to say, if there is a “why” and a “wherefore” in it amenable to reflection, and underivative. An ethic, on the other hand, is irrational if reason and reflection are irrelevant to it, or if, being relevant, they are fundamentally subordinate, and are only the lackeys of a governing consideration which is either irrational or non-rational. The intention of this lecture is to explore the possibilities of rationalism in ethics, (...) supposing that the meaning of rationalism is, broadly speaking, what has just been stated. (shrink)
The opinion that I want to discuss in this essay is fairly commonly although not universally held among moralists. It is the opinion that there is never a moral duty to try to promote one's own pleasure for the sake of that pleasure although, contrariwise, there is often a moral duty to try to promote the pleasure of others for the sake of that pleasure. I cannot myself assent to the view, and I want to explain why I cannot; but (...) I allow that the opposition I have to face is formidable. Indeed there are authors like Meinong who would make degree of self-sacrifice the standard of morality. (shrink)
John Laird was a Scottish philosopher who specialised in metaphysics and moral philosophy. In this early work, which was originally published in 1920, Laird set out to analyse some of the more perplexing problems of philosophical realism. The text includes a brief survey of philosophical realism at the beginning and critical notes throughout. This book will be of value to anyone with an interest in the works of Laird and the history of philosophy.