Twenty-five years ago, robotics guru Joseph Engelberger had a mission to motivate research teams all over the world to design the ‘Elderly Care Giver’, a multitasking personal robot assistant for everyday care needs in old age. In this article, we discuss how this vision of omnipotent care robots has influenced the design strategies of care robotics, the development of R&D initiatives and ethics research on use of care robots. Despite the expectations of robots revolutionizing care of older people, the role (...) of robots in human care has remained marginal. The value of world trade in service robots, including care robots, is rather small. We argue that the implementation of robots in care is not primarily due to negative user attitudes or ethical problems, but to problems in R&D and manufacturing. The care robots currently available on the market are capable of simple, repetitive tasks or colloquial interaction. Thus far, also research on care robots is mostly conducted using imaginary scenarios or small-scale tests built up for research purposes. To develop useful and affordable robot solutions that are ethically, socially and ecologically sustainable, we suggest that robot initiatives should be evaluated within the framework of care ecosystems. This implies that attention has to be paid to the social, emotional and practical contexts in which care is given and received. Also, the political, economic and ecological realities of organizing care and producing technological commodities have to be acknowledged. It is time to openly discuss the drivers behind care robot initiatives to outline the bigger picture of organizing care under conditions of limited resources. (shrink)
This article examines how the interactive capabilities of companion robots, particularly their materiality and animate movements, appeal to human users and generate an image of aliveness. Building on Husserl’s phenomenological notion of a ‘double body’ and theories of emotions as affective responses, we develop a new understanding of the robots’ simulated aliveness. Analyzing empirical findings of a field study on the use of the robot Zora in care homes for older people, we suggest that the aliveness of companion robots is (...) the result of a combination of four aspects: 1) material ingredients, 2) morphology, 3) animate movements guided by software programs and human operators as in Wizard of Oz-settings and 4) anthropomorphising narratives created by their users to support the robot’s performance. We suggest that narratives on affective states, such as, sleepiness or becoming frightened attached to the robot trigger users’ empathic feelings, caring and tenderness toward the robot. (shrink)
El siguiente documento es el resultado de un seminario de investigación sobre novela policíaca latinoamericana reciente, desarrollado en el curso de Novela Latinoamericana, de la Facultad de Filosofía y Letras en la Universidad de La Salle. La fundamentación teórica del seminario tuvo como marco general la Estética de la Recepción fundada en la Escuela de Constanza, Alemania, por Hans Robert Jauss y Wolfgang Iser. Para el caso concreto de la teoría literaria sobre novela policíaca vista en perspectiva sociológica, preferimos apelar (...) a las reflexiones fundacionales de Roger Caillios (1942), las que tiene un sugestivo subtítulo, a saber, La novela policíaca. –De cómo la inteligencia se retira del mundo para consagrarse a sus juegos y de cómo la sociedad introduce sus problemas en éstos. Por otra parte, elegimos la novela corta de Roberto Bolaño, La pista de hielo; y sobre esta elaboramos distintas hipótesis de trabajo, hasta lograr, al juicio de nuestros lectores, una propuesta de teoría literaria, que dé cuenta de la nueva narrativa policíaca. (shrink)
Probabilism is committed to two theses: 1) Opinion comes in degrees—call them degrees of belief, or credences. 2) The degrees of belief of a rational agent obey the probability calculus. Correspondingly, a natural way to argue for probabilism is: i) to give an account of what degrees of belief are, and then ii) to show that those things should be probabilities, on pain of irrationality. Most of the action in the literature concerns stage ii). Assuming that stage i) has been (...) adequately discharged, various authors move on to stage ii) with varied and ingenious arguments. But an unsatisfactory response at stage i) clearly undermines any gains that might be accrued at stage ii) as far as probabilism is concerned: if those things are not degrees of belief, then it is irrelevant to probabilism whether they should be probabilities or not. In this paper we scrutinize the state of play regarding stage i). We critically examine several of the leading accounts of degrees of belief: reducing them to corresponding betting behavior (de Finetti); measuring them by that behavior (Jeffrey); and analyzing them in terms of preferences and their role in decision-making more generally (Ramsey, Lewis, Maher). We argue that the accounts fail, and so they are unfit to subserve arguments for probabilism. We conclude more positively: ‘degree of belief’ should be taken as a primitive concept that forms the basis of our best theory of rational belief and decision: probabilism. (shrink)
A number of philosophers have recently suggested that some abstract, plausibly non-causal and/or mathematical, explanations explain in a way that is radically dif- ferent from the way causal explanation explain. Namely, while causal explanations explain by providing information about causal dependence, allegedly some abstract explanations explain in a way tied to the independence of the explanandum from the microdetails, or causal laws, for example. We oppose this recent trend to regard abstractions as explanatory in some sui generis way, and argue (...) that a prominent ac- count of causal explanation can be naturally extended to capture explanations that radically abstract away from microphysical and causal-nomological details. To this end, we distinguish di erent senses in which an explanation can be more or less abstract, and analyse the connection between explanations’ abstractness and their explanatory power. According to our analysis abstract explanations have much in common with counterfactual causal explanations. (shrink)
Psillos has recently argued that van Fraassen’s arguments against abduction fail. Moreover, he claimed that, if successful, these arguments would equally undermine van Fraassen’s own constructive empiricism, for, Psillos thinks, it is only by appeal to abduction that constructive empiricism can be saved from issuing in a bald scepticism. We show that Psillos’ criticisms are misguided, and that they are mostly based on misinterpretations of van Fraassen’s arguments. Furthermore, we argue that Psillos’ arguments for his claim that constructive empiricism itself (...) needs abduction point up to his failure to recognize the importance of van Fraassen’s broader epistemology for constructive empiricism. Towards the end of our paper we discuss the suspected relationship between constructive empiricism and scepticism in the light of this broader epistemology, and from a somewhat more general perspective. (shrink)
Vann McGee has presented a putative counterexample to modus ponens. I show that (a slightly modified version of) McGee’s election scenario has the same structure as a famous lottery scenario by Kyburg. More specifically, McGee’s election story can be taken to show that, if the Lockean Thesis holds, rational belief is not closed under classical logic, including classical-logic modus ponens. This conclusion defies the existing accounts of McGee’s puzzle.
The paper’s target is the historically influential betting interpretation of subjective probabilities due to Ramsey and de Finetti. While there are several classical and well-known objections to this interpretation, the paper focuses on just one fundamental problem: There is a sense in which degrees of belief cannot be interpreted as betting rates. The reasons differ in different cases, but there’s one crucial feature that all these cases have in common: The agent’s degree of belief in a proposition A does not (...) coincide with her degree of belief in a conditional that A would be the case if she were to bet on A, where the belief in this conditional itself is conditioned on the supposition that the agent will have an opportunity to make such a bet. Even though the two degrees of belief sometimes can coincide (they will coincide in those cases when the bet has no expected causal bearings on the proposition A and the opportunity to bet have no evidential bearings on that proposition), it is the latter belief rather than the former that guides the agent’s rational betting behaviour. The reason is that this latter belief takes into consideration potential interferences that bet opportunities and betting itself might create with regard to the proposition to be betted on. It is because of this interference problem that the agent’s degree of belief in A cannot be interpreted as her betting rate for A. (shrink)
ABSTRACT Our aim in this article is to offer a new justification for preferring theories that are more quantitatively parsimonious than their rivals. We discuss cases where it seems clear that those involved opted for more quantitatively parsimonious theories. We extend previous work on quantitative parsimony by offering an independent probabilistic justification for preferring the more quantitatively parsimonious theories in particular episodes of theory choice. Our strategy allows us to avoid worries that other considerations, such as pragmatic factors of computational (...) tractability and so on, could be the driving ones in the historical cases under consideration. _1_ Introduction _2_ Three Desiderata _2.1_ Limiting _2.2_ Robustness _2.3_ Breadth _2.3.1_ A limited success for Baker _2.3.2_ Rejecting Baker’s analysis _2.4_ The proposal _3_ Probabilistically Additive Hypotheses and a Bayesian Account: The Limpid Rationale Relativized and Reconsidered _3.1_ Neutrinos and beta decay _3.2_ Avogadro’s hypothesis _3.3_ Postulation of Neptune _4_ Conclusion. (shrink)
Kant has famously argued that monogamous marriage is the only relationship where sexual use can take place "without degrading humanity and breaking the moral laws." Kantian marriage, however, has been the target of fierce criticisms by contemporary things: it has been regarded as flawed and paradoncal, as being deeply at odds with feminism, and, at best, as plainly uninteresting. In this paper, I argue that Kantian marriage can indeed survive these criticisms. Finally, the paper advances the discussion beyond marriage. Drawing (...) on Kant 's conception of friendship, I suggest that he might have overlooked the possibility of sex being morally permissible in yet another context. (shrink)
The notions of ground and ontological dependence have made a prominent resurgence in much of contemporary metaphysics. However, objections have been raised. On the one hand, objections have been raised to the need for distinctively metaphysical notions of ground and ontological dependence. On the other, objections have been raised to the usefulness of adding ground and ontological dependence to the existing store of other metaphysical notions. Even the logical properties of ground and ontological dependence are under debate. In this article, (...) I focus on how to account for the judgements of non-symmetry in several of the cases that motivate the introduction of notions like ground and ontological dependence. By focusing on the notion of explanation relative to a theory, I conclude that we do not need to postulate a distinctively asymmetric metaphysical notion in order to account for these judgements. (shrink)
I argue that we should solve the Lottery Paradox by denying that rational belief is closed under classical logic. To reach this conclusion, I build on my previous result that (a slight variant of) McGee’s election scenario is a lottery scenario (see Lissia 2019). Indeed, this result implies that the sensible ways to deal with McGee’s scenario are the same as the sensible ways to deal with the lottery scenario: we should either reject the Lockean Thesis or Belief Closure. After (...) recalling my argument to this conclusion, I demonstrate that a McGee-like example (which is just, in fact, Carroll’s barbershop paradox) can be provided in which the Lockean Thesis plays no role: this proves that denying Belief Closure is the right way to deal with both McGee’s scenario and the Lottery Paradox. A straightforward consequence of my approach is that Carroll’s puzzle is solved, too. (shrink)
Objectification is a notion central to contemporary feminist theory. It has famously been associated with the work of anti-pornography feminists Catharine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin, and more recently with the work of Martha Nussbaum. However, objectification is a notion that has not yet been adequately defined. It has been used rather vaguely to refer to a broad range of cases involving, in some way or another, the treatment of a person as an object. My purpose in this paper is to (...) offer a plausible understanding of objectification. I do that by focusing on the work of four prominent thinkers: Immanuel Kant, and contemporary feminists Catharine MacKinnon, Andrea Dworkin and Martha Nussbaum. Through drawing on these thinkers' conceptions of objectification, I am finally led to a more complete and coherent understanding of this notion. (shrink)
The problem of explanatory non-symmetries provides the strongest reason to abandon the view that laws can figure in explanations without causal underpinnings. I argue that this problem can be overcome. The solution that I propose starts from noticing the importance of conditions of application when laws do explanatory work, and I go on to develop a notion of nomological dependence that can tackle the non-symmetry problem. The strategy is to show how a strong notion of counterfactual dependence as guaranteed by (...) the laws is a plausible account of what we aim towards when we give law-based explanations. The aim of this project is not to deny that causal relations can do explanatory work but to restore laws of nature as capable of being explanatory even in the absence of any knowledge of causal underpinnings. (shrink)
Norms are a pervasive yet mysterious feature of social life. In Explaining Norms, four philosophers and social scientists team up to grapple with some of the many mysteries, offering a comprehensive account of norms: what they are; how and why they emerge, persist and change; and how they work.
Scientific representation: A long journey from pragmatics to pragmatics Content Type Journal Article DOI 10.1007/s11016-010-9465-5 Authors James Ladyman, Department of Philosophy, University of Bristol, 9 Woodland Rd, Bristol, BS8 1TB UK Otávio Bueno, Department of Philosophy, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL 33124, USA Mauricio Suárez, Department of Logic and Philosophy of Science, Complutense University of Madrid, 28040 Madrid, Spain Bas C. van Fraassen, Philosophy Department, San Francisco State University, 1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94132, USA Journal Metascience Online (...) ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796. (shrink)
Everettian quantum mechanics faces the challenge of how to make sense of probability and probabilistic reasoning in a setting where there is typically no unique outcome of measurements. Wallace has built on a proof by Deutsch to argue that a notion of probability can be recovered in the many worlds setting. In particular, Wallace argues that a rational agent has to assign probabilities in accordance with the Born rule. This argument relies on a rationality constraint that Wallace calls state supervenience. (...) I argue that state supervenience is not defensible as a rationality constraint for Everettian agents unless we already invoke probabilistic notions. (shrink)
Temporal dynamics have been increasingly recognized as an important component of facial expressions. With the need for appropriate stimuli in research and application, a range of databases of dynamic facial stimuli has been developed. The present article reviews the existing corpora and describes the key dimensions and properties of the available sets. This includes a discussion of conceptual features in terms of thematic issues in dataset construction as well as practical features which are of applied interest to stimulus usage. To (...) identify the most influential sets, we further examine their citation rates and usage frequencies in existing studies. General limitations and implications for emotion research are noted and future directions for stimulus generation are outlined. (shrink)
Hindriks describes institutions as norm-governed social practices, and argue that his theory help bring together and complete earlier theories of institutions. In this comment on his paper, I argue that his argument would be even better if he clarified certain parts of his argument with regards to the nature of institutions and the relationship between institutions and social norms. I also argue that he should reconsider his claim that institutions exist in order to solve cooperation and coordination problems.
At the heart of Kantian theory lies the prohibition against treating humanity merely as a means. Two of the most influential interpretations of what this means are Wood's and O'Neill's. Drawing on these thinkers' ideas, Kerstein formulates two accounts of what is involved in the idea of treating a person merely as a means: the and accounts. Kerstein's attempt is to show that they are problematic. He introduces his to alleviate the problems they face. I argue that the end-sharing and (...) possible consent accounts are not vulnerable to Kerstein's criticism. However, they both face a shortcoming: they fail to support the Kantian conclusion that the prostitute and the servile person are treated merely as means. Through reconstructing these accounts, I surmount this difficulty. Moreover, my proposal helps Kerstein's own account overcome a problem he admits it has, without the need to resort to consequentialism. (shrink)
Reading is an activity in which both researchers and students invest immense time and energy. However, reading is disregarded as a research method and generally assigned a marginal position as a mere supplement to empirical hands-on methods. In this article we argue that reading should be recognized as a method of inquiry. Based on qualitative interviews with 20 researchers from a humanities department, we explore how researchers read, and we show how reading contributes significantly to their knowledge production. We argue (...) that the concepts of ‘close reading’ and ‘surface reading’ in addition to ‘deep approach’ and ‘surface approach’ insufficiently convey how researchers read. Instead we propose the concept 'Inquiry-Based Reading' for designating the specific orientation towards texts that characterizes how researchers practise reading to further their research. Finally, we suggest that the conceptualization of inquiry-based reading could open up new discussions about the current position of reading in methods curriculum. (shrink)
We posit a key goal of firms’ corporate social responsibility efforts is to influence reputation through carefully crafted communicative practices. This trend has accelerated with the rise of social media such as Twitter and Facebook, which are essentially public message networks that organizations are leveraging to engage with concerned audiences. Given the large number of messages sent on these sites, only some will be effective and achieve broad public resonance. Building on signaling theory, this paper asks whether and how messages (...) conveying CSR-related topics resonate with the public and, if so, which CSR topics and signal qualities are most effective. We test our hypotheses using data on public reactions to Fortune 500 companies’ CSR-focused Twitter feeds, using the retweeting of firms’ messages as a proxy for public resonance. We find resonance is positively associated with messages that convey CSR topics such as the environment or education, those that make the topic explicit through use of hashtags, and those that tap into existing social movement discussions. (shrink)
What is the relation between norms (in the sense of ?socially accepted rules?) and conventions? A number of philosophers have suggested that there is some kind of conceptual or constitutive relation between them. Some hold that conventions are or entail special kinds of norms (the ?conventions-as-norms thesis?). Others hold that at least some norms are or entail special kinds of conventions (the ?norms-as-conventions thesis?). We argue that both theses are false. Norms and conventions are crucially different conceptually and functionally in (...) ways that make it the case that it is a serious mistake to try to assimilate them. They are crucially different conceptually in that whereas conventions are not normative and are behaviour dependent and desire dependent, norms are normative, behaviour independent, and desire independent. They are crucially different functionally in that whereas conventions principally serve the function of facilitating coordination, norms principally serve the function of making us accountable to one another. (shrink)
This paper deals with Dooyeweerd's radical thesis, i.e., his thesis that reason necessarily has a 'religious root' (radix = root). This thesis was Dooyeweerd's main justification for his own religious philosophy. First I argue that the arguments Dooyeweerd puts forward do not warrant his radical thesis. Secondly, I argue that Dooyeweerd's thesis itself is ambivalent between the theses (i) that religious commitments form the transcendental conditions for philosophical thinking and (ii) that religious commitments are constitutive for philosophy and (iii) that (...) religious commitments are regulative for philosophy. Each of these interpretations, I argue, is exposed to serious objections and leads to what Vincent Brummer has called 'the dilemma of a Christian philosophy'. I argue that Brummers solution for this dilemma is untenable. Since Dooyeweerd's radical thesis is untenable as it stands, so is his justification of his project of a 'Christian philosophy' ; and since Brummers solution to the dilemma is untenable as well, so is his justification of that project. In the last section of this paper I offer an alternative justification for such a project. The central concept therein is 'properly functioning noetic faculties'. (shrink)
We often speak of an object being composed of various other objects. We say that the deck is composed of the cards, that a road is the sum total of its sections, that a house is composed of its walls, ceilings, floors, doors, etc. Suppose we have some material objects. Here is a philosophical question: what conditions must obtain for those objects to compose something? In his recent book Material Beings, Peter van Inwagen addresses this question, which he calls the (...) ‘special composition question’; his answer is:1 (1) For any material objects X , the X s compose something iff the activity of the X s constitutes a life, or there is only one of the Xs. Additionally, he accepts a simpler thesis that follows from (1):2 (2) Every material object is either a mereological atom or a living thing, where a mereological atom is an object lacking proper parts. (2) may seem radical. If it is true then there are no tables, chairs, planets, protons, galaxies, gas stations, etc. But van Inwagen does not hold it lightly— there are serious difficulties with alternate views. Moreover, he claims that.. (shrink)
Peter van Inwagen ’s argument for incompatibilism uses a sentential operator, “N”, which can be read as “No one has any choice about the fact that....” I show that, given van Inwagen ’s understanding of the notion of having a choice, the argument is invalid. However, a different interpretation of “N” can be given, such that the argument is clearly valid, the premises remain highly plausible, and the conclusion implies that free will is incompatible with determinism.