My experience concerning cases similar to the Wanglie case indicates that there was virtually no possibility of a solution for the conflict between the different expectations of the Wanglie family and those of the physicians caring for Helga Wanglie. A persistent vegetative state precludes a return to consciousness unless an extraordinary phenomenon takes place. Therefore, the physicians expected to be relieved of the duty of continuing to give Mrs. Wanglie respiratory care. However, her family thought it their duty to provide (...) their loved one with the best possible treatment. The family based their position on the claim that life is God's gift and that only He has the right to terminate it. Such spiritual convictions are perceived as reflective of a higher “truth” and are not predisposed to negotiation or change according to the situation. (shrink)
Kidney transplantation is the most efficacious and cost-effective treatment for end-stage renal disease. However, the treatment’s accessibility is limited by a chronic shortage of transplantable kidneys, resulting in the death of numerous patients worldwide as they wait for a kidney to become available. Despite the implementation of various measures the disparity between supply and needs continues to grow. This paper begins with a look at the current treatment options, including various sources of transplantable kidneys, for end-stage renal disease. We propose, (...) in accordance with others, the introduction of compensated kidney donation as a means of addressing the current shortage. We briefly outline some of the advantages of this proposal, and then turn to examine several of the ethical arguments usually marshaled against it in a bid to demonstrate that this proposal indeed passes the ethics test. Using available data of public opinions on compensated donation, we illustrate that public support for such a program would be adequate enough that we can realistically eliminate the transplant waiting list if compensation is introduced. We urge a pragmatic approach going forward; altruism in living kidney donation is important, but altruism only is an unsuccessful doctrine. (shrink)
We give an example in which it is possible to understand quantum statistics using classical concepts. This is done by studying the interaction of chargedmatter oscillators with the thermal and zeropoint electromagnetic fields characteristic of quantum electrodynamics and classical stochastic electrodynamics. Planck's formula for the spectral distribution and the elements of energy hw are interpreted without resorting to discontinuities. We also show the aspects in which our model calculation complement other derivations of blackbody radiation spectrum without quantum assumptions.
We make a brief review of the Kramers escape rate theory for the probabilistic motion of a particle in a potential well U(x), and under the influence of classical fluctuation forces. The Kramers theory is extended in order to take into account the action of the thermal and zero-point random electromagnetic fields on a charged particle. The result is physically relevant because we get a non-null escape rate over the potential barrier at low temperatures (T → 0). It is found (...) that, even if the mean energy is much smaller than the barrier height, the classical particle can escape from the potential well due to the action of the zero-point fluctuating fields. These stochastic effects can be used to give a classical interpretation to some quantum tunneling phenomena. Relevant experimental data are used to illustrate the theoretical results. (shrink)
We present a description of the Stern–Gerlach type experiments using only the concepts of classical electrodynamics and the Newton’s equations of motion. The quantization of the projections of the spin (or the projections of the magnetic dipole) is not introduced in our calculations. The main characteristic of our approach is a quantitative analysis of the motion of the magnetic atoms at the entrance of the magnetic field region. This study reveals a mechanism which modifies continuously the orientation of the magnetic (...) dipole of the atom in a very short time interval, at the entrance of the magnetic field region. The mechanism is based on the conservation of the total energy associated with a magnetic dipole which moves in a non uniform magnetic field generated by an electromagnet. A detailed quantitative comparison with the (1922) Stern–Gerlach experiment and the didactical (1967) experiment by J.R. Zacharias is presented. We conclude, contrary to the original Stern–Gerlach statement, that the classical explanations are not ruled out by the experimental data. (shrink)
Informed consent is recognized as a primary ethical requirement to conduct research involving humans. In the investigations with the use of human biological material, informed consent (IC) assumes a differentiated condition on account of the many future possibilities. This work presents suitable alternatives for IC regarding the storage and use of human biological material in research, according to new Brazilian regulations. Both norms – Resolution 441/11 of the National Health Council, approved on 12 May 2011, and Ordinance 2.201 (NATIONAL GUIDELINES (...) FOR BIOREPOSITORIES AND BIOBANKS OF HUMAN BIOLOGICAL MATERIAL FOR RESEARCH PURPOSE) of the Brazil Ministry of Health, approved on 14 September 2011 – state that the consent of subjects for the collection, storage and use of samples stored in Biobanks is necessarily established by means of a Free and Informed Consent Form (ICF). In order to obtain individual and formal statements, this form should contain the following two mutually exclusive options: an explanation about the use of the stored material in each research study, and the need for new consent or the waiver thereof when the material is used for a new study. On the other hand, ICF suitable for Biorepositories must be exclusive and related to specific research. Although Brazilian and international regulations identify the main aspects to be included in the IC, efforts are still necessary to improve the consent process, so that the document will become a bond of trust between subject and researcher. (shrink)
La noción de Ley del mismo modo que las nociones de Estado o de Nación no es sino una entelequia que enmascara tras de sí una ausencia sustancial. Su existencia no posee otro objetivo que el de brindar un sostén simbólico capaz de velar ese vacío originario, haciendo de nuestro mundo un lugar menos acosado por la incertidumbre. De acuerdo con esto, el objetivo del presente trabajo es el de internarnos en una búsqueda que pueda conducirnos nuevamente hacia ese suelo (...) originario, hacia ese momento cero de la institución. El ensayista Michel de Montaigne oficiará de guía en esa búsqueda. Él nos conducirá hacia el terreno en el cual la solidez de los fundamentos parece desvanecerse, o, más bien, hacia el momento simbólico en el cual una mera decisión humana, tan arbitraria como contingente, da origen a aquellas normas que poco a poco, gracias a esa maestra violenta y traidora que es la costumbre, habrán de ser veneradas en su aparente intemporalidad. The notion of law as the notions of state or nation is nothing but an entelechy that masks behind it a substantial absence. Its existence has no other purpose than to provide us with a symbolic support able to veil that originating void, making our world a place less hurried by uncertainty. In accordance with this, the aim of the present paper is to begin a search that may lead us back to the original soil, to the time zero of institution. The essayist Michel de Montaigne will be our guide. He will lead us to the land on which the strength of the foundation seems to vanish, or, rather, to the symbolic moment in which a mere humane, arbitrary and contingent decision gives rise to those standards who gradually, thanks to the violent and treacherous teacher who is custom, start to be worshiped in his apparent timelessness. (shrink)
We consider the simple case of a nonrelativistic charged harmonic oscillator in one dimension, to investigate how to take into account the radiation reaction and vacuum fluctuation forces within the Schrödinger equation. The effects of both zero-point and thermal classical electromagnetic vacuum fields, characteristic of stochastic electrodynamics, are separately considered. Our study confirms that the zero-point electromagnetic fluctuations are dynamically related to the momentum operator p=−i ℏ ∂/∂ x used in the Schrödinger equation.
O artigo busca perceber os movimentos elaborados na tentativa de construção de sentido frente a um acontecimento. Para tal, partimos das indagações do filósofo Gilles Deleuze e do sociólogo Louis Quéré sobre a natureza paradoxal do acontecimento, especialmente em sua relação com a linguagem, buscando relacioná-lo ao fazer jornalístico a partir da cobertura da revista Veja no caso Isabella Nardoni.
Partindo de algumas passagens dos Ensaios de Montaigne, e, especialmente, do capítulo "Sobre versos de Virgílio", consideramos o retrato da mulher elaborado pelo autor. Contrariamente à maioria dos autores de sua época - dentre os quais Bodin e Charron que, seguindo Aristóteles, consideram que a mulher possui uma natureza inferior à do homem, feita para obedecer, enquanto este último o foi para governar -, Montaigne nos apresenta outro quadro. Influenciado, acreditamos, pelo texto de Agrippa sobre as mulheres, ele propõe uma (...) igualdade dos gêneros desequilibrada, perturbada e aniquilada tanto pela tradição quanto pelos costumes. Taking as a starting point some passages of Montaigne's Essays and the chapter "On some verses of Virgil", we consider the woman's portrait composed by the author. In contradicion with the majority of his contemporary authors - such as Bodin and Charron who, in accordance with Aristotle, consider women's nature as inferior to that of men, since women are meant to obey while men are meant to rule -, Montaigne presents us another picture. Influenced by, we believe, Agrippa's text on women, he proposes an equality between the genders unballanced, perturbed and annihilated by both tradition and customs. (shrink)
The effects of the vacuum electromagnetic fluctuations and the radiation reaction fields on the time development of a simple microscopic system are identified using a new mathematical method. This is done by studying a charged mechanical oscillator (frequency Ω 0)within the realm of stochastic electrodynamics, where the vacuum plays the role of an energy reservoir. According to our approach, which may be regarded as a simple mathematical exercise, we show how the oscillator Liouville equation is transformed into a Schrödinger-like stochastic (...) equation with a free parameter h′ with dimensions of action. The role of the physical Planck's constant h is introduced only through the zero-point vacuum electromagnetic fields. The perturbative and the exact solutions of the stochastic Schrödinger-like equation are presented for h′>0. The exact solutions for which h′<h are called sub-Heisenberg states. These nonperturbative solutions appear in the form of Gaussian, non-Heisenberg states for which the initial classical uncertainty relation takes the form 〈(δx 2)〉〈(δp) 2 〉=(h′/2) 2,which includes the limit of zero indeterminacy (h → 0). We show how the radiation reaction and the vacuum fields govern the evolution of these non-Heisenberg states in phase space, guaranteeing their decay to the stationary state with average energy hΩ 0 /2 and 〈(δx) 2 〉〈(δp) 2 〉=h 2 /4 at zero temperature. Environmental and thermal effects-are briefly discussed and the connection with similar works within the realm of quantum electrodynamics is also presented. We suggest some other applications of the classical non-Heisenberg states introduced in this paper and we also indicate experiments which might give concrete evidence of these states. (shrink)
From the point of view of the spectator, what singularizes the documentary cinema? This essay argues that documentary’s audience defines itself in relation to its capacity to judge. Documentary movies usually demands the public to untie themselves from the immersive condition in order to be put in situ. To address this question, we discuss films that invite the spectator not only judge its scenes, but the daily images of the world.
The ethics review system of research is now well-established, at least in the developed world, although there are many differences in how countries view it and go about managing it. The UK specifically is now seeking to revise its system by speeding up the process of ethics approval but only for some studies. It is proposed that only those studies which pose “no material ethical issues” should be “fast-tracked”. However, it is unclear what this means, who should decide and what (...) should be included in this category. In this paper, we go some way towards answering these questions. While we are certain that the debate is only just beginning, we are equally certain that it will continue to run long after the system has been reformed. To stimulate this conversation and to inform a pilot project of the new system directly, we review two candidates to help give some substance to the notion of “material” ethical issues. Firstly, material could mean a certain type or degree of risk. Second, material could mean how physically invasive the research is. We conclude that there is still much work to be done on making the system of governing health and social care consistent and practicable. (shrink)
Legends thrive, but there is little tangible evidence about dozens of Malay kingdoms, which are said to have flourished long before the emergence of Melaka in the late 14th century. The Bujang Valley in South Kedah, for one, is Malaysia’s richest archaeological site. The valley is the guardian of countless hidden tales which are waiting to be unveiled. Here, the beliefs of the Malay ancestors were centred upon nature and the spirits which permeate every aspect of their lives. These beliefs (...) have been passed down to the next generation by the elderly. They have valuable information to share about their families and ethnicity of which written evidence is often scarce. Such tales may perish if they are not well documented. Oral history, adopted as its testimony, permits us to gather data not available in written records. Oral history techniques are able to elicit facts, feelings, and descriptions, contributing to social history. Moreover, this technique is able to reveal how individual values and actions shaped the past, and how the past shapes present-day values and actions. Findings include offerings made to appease the spirits of the rivers and lands. Other findings include the revelation of the Bujang Valley as the centre of knowledge. The establishment of madrasah – “sekolah pondok” brought about a better understanding of Islam resulting in the inherent beliefs in the supernatural to slowly diminish. All these recollections form a body of knowledge that is priceless and worth recording. Knowledge published in tangible forms is a key factor to worldwide recognition. Therefore, these efforts to safeguard oral history and family stories should be a top priority for new knowledge development and commercial enhancement for generations to come. (shrink)
The effects of the vacuum electromagnetic fluctuations and the radiation reaction fields on the time development of a simple microscopic system are identified using a new mathematical method. This is done by studying a charged mechanical oscillator (frequency Ω 0)within the realm of stochastic electrodynamics, where the vacuum plays the role of an energy reservoir. According to our approach, which may be regarded as a simple mathematical exercise, we show how the oscillator Liouville equation is transformed into a Schrödinger-like stochastic (...) equation with a free parameter h′ with dimensions of action. The role of the physical Planck's constant h is introduced only through the zero-point vacuum electromagnetic fields. The perturbative and the exact solutions of the stochastic Schrödinger-like equation are presented for h′>0. The exact solutions for which h′shrink)
This paper examines the political and executive leadership in Malaysia, with reference to the fifth Prime Minister, Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. The Prime Minister is an important autonomous actor, a leader of the government party who also manages public bureaucracy and utmost, Abdullah is seen as the leader of the people. Policy agenda depends on the Prime Minister’s authority to either make an impact or bring changes. This paper will address the leadership style of Abdullah in the executive and policy-making (...) and what kind of influence does he provide in policy-making and its implications in Malaysia’s political environment. (shrink)
En este escrito pretendo hacer una exposición de algunas de las ideas más importantes de Brandom. Esta exposición tenderá a mostrar, en primer lugar, los conceptos más importantes de la teoría semántica inferencialista que plantea Brandom. En segundo lugar, esta exposición tenderá a mostrar que hay dos formas de racionalidad en la teoría que Brandom elabora, a saber, la racionalidad que usa conceptos e introduce contenidos conceptuales en el lenguaje, y la racionalidad que esclarece y critica los contenidos de los (...) conceptos. Por último, todo lo anterior será conducido a señalar la gran importancia que Brandom atribuye al vocabulario lógico. (shrink)
The Abrahamic faiths—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—have bequeathed to the world a rich religious and cultural heritage which has been enormously influential through the centuries up to the present. While this is easily evident in the modern practices of these monotheisms, it is also profoundly present in the development of their diverse intellectual traditions with theological and philosophical insights and analyses seeking to understand and explain the nature of the presence of the divine to human beings. The present collection of essays (...) by a wide array of North American scholars provides a dozen studies of language, discourse, debate, and reasoning with a focus on theological and philosophical issues central to these three traditions that commonly call Abraham their human and/or spiritual father. Collectively these essays represent a dialogue among those who work at crossroads of theology, philosophy, history, language, and religion. Their dialogue adds to the growing library of works that seek to highlight collaboration and common ground between these religious and philosophical traditions. The dialogue is multi-directional, taking place within various religions and philosophical perspectives, as well as between religion, theology, and philosophy. It is also multi-purpose in that it seeks to transcend the mere theoretical, and to reveal the concrete; the thinkers, philosophers, and theologians discussed in these essays were deeply concerned with mutual understanding and peaceful co-existence, a goal that has become even more desirable in this post-9/11 world. (shrink)
The linguafranca, or Mediterranean pidgin, was spoken by sailors and merchants that sailed the Mediterranean Sea during centuries. This pidgin borrowed terms from languages such as: Castilian and Catalan, French and Provencal (Occitanian language), Italian, Genovese, and Venetian. Moreover, words of Arabic and Neogreek origins were added to al1 this common mass. So, this lingua is a great interesting resource to deal with the study of the Spanish naval histoy in the Mediterranean Sea from 12" to 13" century, when its (...) usage started to vanish. From 16" century on, it started to be spoken in America. This common language, between Romance language nations, only uses the infinitive verb for al1 tenses and modes of verb's conjugation. Nowadays, there are terms that still remain in sailors' language such as wind names: leveche, jaloque, maestral or mistral, tramontana; meteorological phenomena names: bórea or boria; and nomenclature for typical crafts: paramola, escálamo, car, batallol, laud or llaüt, latino. (shrink)
Within New Testament writings, but in a special way in Paul’s letters, we can observe a significant presence of the greek term parresía, or frank language. This term was not only a rhetorical-linguistic instrument, on Paul’s contemporary time, but an attitude made by the speaker, or by the epistolar author before his recipients. On Eph 6,19, we see this term and its relation with the evangelizing mission of the author. Moreover, this concept was not only a linguistic function for Paul’s (...) writings and time actions, but it can have an effectiveness in present time. (shrink)
During the last decades, many cognitive architectures (CAs) have been realized adopting different assumptions about the organization and the representation of their knowledge level. Some of them (e.g. SOAR ) adopt a classical symbolic approach, some (e.g. LEABRA[ 48]) are based on a purely connectionist model, while others (e.g. CLARION ) adopt a hybrid approach combining connectionist and symbolic representational levels. Additionally, some attempts (e.g. biSOAR) trying to extend the representational capacities of CAs by integrating diagrammatical representations and reasoning are (...) also available . In this paper we propose a reflection on the role that Conceptual Spaces, a framework developed by Peter G¨ardenfors  more than fifteen years ago, can play in the current development of the Knowledge Level in Cognitive Systems and Architectures. In particular, we claim that Conceptual Spaces offer a lingua franca that allows to unify and generalize many aspects of the symbolic, sub-symbolic and diagrammatic approaches (by overcoming some of their typical problems) and to integrate them on a common ground. In doing so we extend and detail some of the arguments explored by G¨ardenfors  for defending the need of a conceptual, intermediate, representation level between the symbolic and the sub-symbolic one. In particular we focus on the advantages offered by Conceptual Spaces (w.r.t. symbolic and sub-symbolic approaches) in dealing with the problem of compositionality of representations based on typicality traits. Additionally, we argue that Conceptual Spaces could offer a unifying framework for interpreting many kinds of diagrammatic and analogical representations. As a consequence, their adoption could also favor the integration of diagrammatical representation and reasoning in CAs. (shrink)
According to editor Omar Swartz, the aim of Communication and Creative Democracy: Interdisciplinary Perspectives is to provide “a conceptual framework for understanding what it means to be an engaged citizen.”1 To accomplish this aim, Swartz brings together ten essays from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds that are intended to tease out and further develop the notion of “creative democracy,” an admittedly vague term coming out of the work of John Dewey. Swartz argues that now is an important time to (...) consider the potential of creative democracy because the emphasis on political institutions and processes as the hallmark of democracy—rather than on “the responsibility and participation of informed citizens”2—has .. (shrink)