L. Albertazzi, G. J. van Tonder, and D. Vishwanath (eds): Perception Beyond Inference: The Information Content of Visual Processes Content Type Journal Article Pages 53-55 DOI 10.1007/s11023-011-9253-z Authors Lorenzo Magnani, Department of Philosophy and Computational Philosophy Laboratory, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy Journal Minds and Machines Online ISSN 1572-8641 Print ISSN 0924-6495 Journal Volume Volume 22 Journal Issue Volume 22, Number 1.
If one demystifies entropy the second law of thermodynamics comes out as an emergent property entirely based on the simple dynamic mechanical laws that govern the motion and energies of system parts on a micro-scale. The emergence of the second law is illustrated in this paper through the development of a new, very simple and highly efficient technique to compare time-averaged energies in isolated conservative linear large scale dynamical systems. Entropy is replaced by a notion that is much more transparent (...) and more or less dual called ectropy. Ectropy has been introduced before but we further modify the notion of ectropy such that the unit in which it is expressed becomes the unit of energy. The second law of thermodynamics in terms of ectropy states that ectropy decreases with time on a large enough time-scale and has an absolute minimum equal to zero. Zero ectropy corresponds to energy equipartition. Basically we show that by enlarging the dimension of an isolated conservative linear dynamical system and the dimension of the system parts over which we consider time-averaged energy partition, the tendency towards equipartition increases while equipartition is achieved in the limit. This illustrates that the second law is an emergent property of these systems. Finally from our large scale linear dynamic model we clarify Loschmidt’s paradox concerning the irreversible behavior of ectropy obtained from the reversible dynamic laws that govern motion and energy at the micro-scale. (shrink)
A.G. van Aarde and historical Jesus research. A.G. van Aarde’s contribution to historical Jesus research is mainly expressed in his book Fatherless in Galilee: Jesus as Child of God. The book was the result of five years of Jesus research. Van Aarde is an ordained minister of the Netherdutch Reformed Church of Africa. Since the book’s publication in 2001, the NRCA has experienced an immense dispute regarding the book in particular but also regarding the subject of historical Jesus research in (...) general. This dispute has publicly escalated since 2010. It has often centred on Van Aarde’s notion of Jesus’ fatherlessness. This article will focus on said book in order to ascertain what is meant by the concept ‘the fatherless Jesus’. This is done to illustrate that Van Aarde’s research, as it converges in the scrutinised publication, remains of relevance to the NRCA. (shrink)
In an article in Utilitas Theo van Willigenburg has argued that moral valuation is distinguished from other forms of valuation by the Kantian concept of respect. He criticizes, from that standpoint, an account I put forward, which builds on the connections between moral wrongdoing, blame and withdrawal of recognition. I examine the difference between these two approaches and defend my own.
I oppose the way John Skorupski characterizes morality in terms of the blameworthy and the role he consequently assigns to punitive feelings in directing one's will and shaping one's character. Skorupski does not hold that the punishment involved in blame- and guilt-feelings grounds the normativity of moral obligation. He defends a specific view of moral psychology and moral practice in which the blame-feeling disposes to the withdrawal of recognition, which involves some sort of casting the transgressor out of the community (...) resulting in the suffering of repentance which is necessary to make atonement possible. I argue that this picture threatens to socialize morality. I defend the Kantian idea that the will is not aligned to obligation through castigation, but through our consciousness of our vocation as takers and givers of reasons. This highlights very different feelings as essential to the typically moral stance, feelings that are not necessarily punitive, like feelings of respect and reverence. (shrink)
Thomas Nagel’ın “Hiçbir-Yerden Bakış Açısı” adlı kitabı çok alıntılanmış bir eserdir. Buradaki argümanlar sıklıkla bilincin nesnel-bilimsel bir açıklamasının yapılabilmesinin, en iyi ihtimalle, önündeki büyük ve yapısal sorunların dile getirilişi veya tümüyle imkansız olduğunu gösteren akıl yürütmeler olarak algılanır. Bu iki yanlış algıyı özetlememin ardından her ikisinin de neden hatalı olduğunu gösteriyorum. Bunu yaptıktan sonra her iki hatanın nedenlerini birden yaratan ortak bir neden daha olduğunu gösteriyorum. Bu nedenin Thomas Nagel’ın nesnel fenomenoloji önerisinin ya belirsiz veya saçma bulunarak bir kenara bırakılması (...) ya da hepten reddedilmesi olduğunu savunuyorum. Böylelikle nesnel fenomenoloji projesinin özünde deneyimin öznel boyutunun, nesnel bir açıklamasının verilebilmesini sağlayabilmek için bilinci açıklamakta halihazırda kullandığımız zihinselci terimler setinde kavramsal ve kuramsal yenilenme yapılması yönünde bir çağrı olduğunu gösterebileceğimi düşünüyorum: Nesnel fenomenoloji, öznel fenomenin kavramsal yenilenme aracılığıyla özneler-arası ulaşılabilirliğini sağlama projesidir. (shrink)