This paper presents the intelligent virtual animals that inhabit Omosa, a virtual learning environment to help secondary school students learn how to conduct scientific inquiry and gain concepts from biology. Omosa supports multiple agents, including animals, plants, and human hunters, which live in groups of varying sizes and in a predator-prey relationship with other agent types (species). In this paper we present our generic agent architecture and the algorithms that drive all animals. We concentrate on two of our animals to (...) present how different parameter values affect their movements and inter/intra-group interactions. Two evaluations studies are included: one to demonstrate the effect of different components of our architecture; another to provide domain expert validation of the animal behavior. (shrink)
This paper reports on an ongoing ARC Discovery Project that is conducting design research into learning in collaborative virtual worlds (CVW).The paper will describe three design components of the project: (a) pedagogical design, (b)technical and graphics design, and (c) learning research design. The perspectives of each design team will be discussed and how the three teams worked together to produce the CVW. The development of productive failure learning activities for the CVW will be discussed and there will be an interactive (...) demonstration of the project's CVW. (shrink)
‘Smart’ devices are becoming increasingly ubiquitous. While these sophisticated machines are useful for various purposes, they sometimes evoke feelings of eeriness or discomfort that constitute uncanniness, a much-discussed phenomenon in robotics research. Adult participants rated the uncanniness of a hypothetical future smart speaker that was described as possessing the mental capacities for experience, agency, neither, or both. The novel condition prompting participants to attribute both agency and experience to the speaker filled an important theoretical gap in the literature. Consistent with (...) the mind perception hypothesis of uncanniness, participants in the with-experience condition rated the device significantly higher in uncanniness than those in the control condition and the with-agency condition. Participants in the with-both condition also rated the device higher in uncanniness than those in the control condition and the with-agency condition, although this latter difference only approached statistical significance. (shrink)
This interview with Charles Taylor explores a central concern throughout his work, namely, his concern to ‘reenchant’ self and world through a careful examination of value as emanating from the world rather than from ourselves. It focuses especially on the status of his central doctrine of ‘strong evaluation’ against the background of mainstream meta-ethical theories, such as neo-Kantian constructivism and robust realist non-naturalism. Additionally, the relationship between Taylor’s theism and his moral–political philosophy is discussed. A key issue that (...) is examined is what ontological background picture can make sense of the strong evaluative experience of higher worth. Some other related issues that are explored revolve around Taylor’s papers ‘Disenchantment-Reenchantment’ and ‘Recovering the Sacred’, which tentatively explore the meaning of reenchantment. (shrink)
This instructional case explores ethical and leadership issues within the context of public accounting. The case examines one senior manager in a public accounting firm who failed to receive an anticipated promotion to partner and the resulting discussions and actions that follow. The primary objectives of the case are to increase students’ awareness of select ethical issues commonly faced by auditors as they attempt to serve the public trust, their clients, and their firms, and to consider their own value system (...) in relation to the issues identified in this case. The secondary learning objectives are to increase students’ knowledge of the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct / IESBA Code of Ethics, encourage consideration of the impact of ethical and unethical behaviors by auditors on others within the profession, and illustrate how leadership within an organization influences the behaviors of others. (shrink)
_Wittgenstein, Mind and Meaning_ offers a provocative re-reading of Wittgenstein's later writings on language and mind, and explores the tensions between Wittgenstein's ideas and contemporary cognitivist conceptions of the mental. This book addresses both Wittgenstein's later works as well as contemporary issues in philosophy of mind. It provides fresh insight into the later Wittgenstein and raises vital questions about the foundations of cognitivism and its wider implications for psychology and cognitive science.
This interview with Charles Taylor explores a central concern throughout his work, viz., his concern to confront the challenges presented by the process of ‘disenchantment’ in the modern world. It focuses especially on what is involved in seeking a kind of ‘re-enchantment.' A key issue that is discussed is the relationship of Taylor’s theism to his effort of seeking re-enchantment. Some other related issues that are explored pertain to questions surrounding Taylor’s argument against the standard secularization thesis (...) that views secularization as a process involving the ineluctable fading away of religion. Additionally, the relationship between Taylor’s religious views and his philosophical work is discussed. (shrink)
Psychological essentialism is the belief that some internal, unseen essence or force determines the common outward appearances and behaviors of category members. We investigated whether reasoning about transplants of bodily elements showed evidence of essentialist thinking. Both Americans and Indians endorsed the possibility of transplants conferring donors' personality, behavior, and luck on recipients, consistent with essentialism. Respondents also endorsed essentialist effects even when denying that transplants would change a recipient's category membership (e.g., predicting that a recipient of a pig's heart (...) would act more pig-like but denying that the recipient would become a pig). This finding runs counter to predictions from the strongest version of the “minimalist” position (Strevens,2000), an alternative to essentialism. Finally, studies asking about a broader range of donor-to-recipient transfers indicated that Indians essentialized more types of transfers than Americans, but neither sample essentialized monetary transfer. This suggests that results from bodily transplant conditions reflect genuine essentialism rather than broader magical thinking. (shrink)
There are clear associations between the overall quantity of input children are exposed to and their vocabulary acquisition. However, by uncovering specific features of the input that matter, we can better understand the mechanisms involved in vocabulary learning. We examine whether exposure to wh-questions, a challenging quality of the communicative input, is associated with toddlers' vocabulary and later verbal reasoning skills in a sample of low-income, African-American fathers and their 24-month-old children. Dyads were videotaped in free play sessions at home. (...) Videotapes were transcribed and reliably coded for sheer quantity of fathers' input as well as the number of wh-questions fathers produce. Children's productive vocabulary was measured at 24 months using the McArthur Bates Communicative Development Inventory MCDI, and children's verbal reasoning skills were measured 1 year later using the Bayley Scales of Infant Development. Results indicate that the overall quantity of father talk did not relate to children's vocabulary or reasoning skills. However, fathers' use of wh-questions related to both vocabulary and reasoning outcomes. Children's responses to wh-questions were more frequent and more syntactically complex, measured using the mean length of utterance, than their responses to other questions. Thus, posing wh-questions to 2-year-olds is a challenging type of input, which elicits a verbal response from the child that likely helps build vocabulary and foster verbal reasoning abilities. (shrink)
Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing is a technology which provides information about fetal genetic characteristics very early in pregnancy by examining fetal DNA obtained from a sample of maternal blood. NIPT is a morally complex technology that has advanced quickly to market with a strong push from industry developers, leaving many areas of uncertainty still to be resolved, and creating a strong need for health policy that reflects women’s social and ethical values. We approach the need for ethical policy-making by studying the (...) use of NIPT and emerging policy in the province of Ontario, Canada. Using an adapted version of constructivist grounded theory, we conducted interviews with 38 women who have had personal experiences with NIPT. We used an iterative process of data collection and analysis and a staged coding strategy to conduct a descriptive analysis of ethics issues identified implicitly and explicitly by women who have been affected by this technology. The findings of this paper focus on current ethical issues for women seeking NIPT, including place in the prenatal pathway, health care provider counselling about the test, industry influence on the diffusion of NIPT, consequences of availability of test results. Other issues gain relevance in the context of future policy decisions regarding NIPT, including funding of NIPT and principles that may govern the expansion of the scope of NIPT. These findings are not an exhaustive list of all the potential ethical issues related to NIPT, but rather a representation of the issues which concern women who have personal experience with this test. Women who have had personal experience with NIPT have concerns and priorities which sometimes contrast dramatically with the theoretical ethics literature. These findings suggest the importance of engaging patients in ethical deliberation about morally complex technologies, and point to the need for more deliberative patient engagement work in this area. (shrink)
This is the first comprehensive evaluation of Charles Taylor's work and a major contribution to leading questions in philosophy and the human sciences as they face an increasingly pluralistic age. Charles Taylor is one of the most influential contemporary moral and political philosophers: in an era of specialisation he is one of the few thinkers who has developed a comprehensive philosophy which speaks to the conditions of the modern world in a way that is compelling to specialists in (...) various disciplines. This collection of specially commissioned essays brings together twelve distinguished scholars from a variety of fields to discuss critically Taylor's work. The topics range from the history of philosophy, to truth, modernity and postmodernity, theism, interpretation, the human sciences, liberalism, pluralism and difference. Taylor responds to all the contributions and re-articulates his own views. (shrink)
Charles Taylor is one of the most influential and prolific philosophers in the English-speaking world today. The breadth of his writings is unique, ranging from reflections on artificial intelligence to analyses of contemporary multicultural societies. This thought-provoking introduction to Taylor's work outlines his ideas in a coherent and accessible way without reducing their richness and depth. His contribution to many of the enduring debates within Western philosophy is examined and the arguments of his critics assessed. Taylor's reflections (...) on the topics of moral theory, selfhood, political theory and epistemology form the core chapters within the book. Ruth Abbey engages with the secondary literature on Taylor's work and suggests that some criticisms by contemporaries have been based on misinterpretations and suggests ways in which a better understanding of Taylor's work leads to different criticisms of it. The book serves as an ideal companion to Taylor's ideas for students of philosophy and political theory, and will be welcomed by the non-specialist looking for an authoritative guide to Taylor's large and challenging body of work. (shrink)
Despite great advances in understanding genetic mechanisms, there still exists a bias toward equating genes with innate modules that determine important developmental events. But genes are equally relevant to understanding developmental plasticity shaped by ecological events. In other words, the term 'genetic inheritance' does not specify ontogenetic mechanisms. Here we present a case history of a species assumed to be under the control of prespecified genetic wiring to direct critical behavioral events such as communication and mating. We show, however, that (...) exogenetic processes stemming from the species's ontogenetic niche provide an alternative view of the flexibility of development especially with respect to behavioral performance. (shrink)
A review of the literature on corporate governance serves to demonstrate the applicability of many governance solutions to the university setting. Based on a review of university scandals, most of which are recent but some of which took place decades ago, it is possible to categorize them as follows: sex scandals, drugs, cheating, hazing, admissions and diplomas, on-the-job consumption, athletics, and murder. Several examples are provided in the paper, along with their impact on various stakeholders. The paper then discusses a (...) variety of solutions designed to either preempt the activities potentially leading to scandal, to deter them or to punish perpetrators. Some of these involve structural changes, institutional policies and procedures, fines, terminations, and sanctions. The paper emphasizes the proactive safeguards which govern and monitor to make sure that universities do not suffer on the back end and that their reputations do not suffer into the future. (shrink)
This 2003 book offers an interpretation of Heidegger's major work, Being and Time. Unlike those who view Heidegger as an idealist, Taylor Carman argues that Heidegger is best understood as a realist. Amongst the distinctive features of the book are an interpretation explicitly oriented within a Kantian framework and an analysis of Dasein in relation to recent theories of intentionality, notably those of Dennett and Searle. Rigorous, jargon-free and deftly argued this book will be necessary reading for all serious (...) students of Heidegger. (shrink)
Thomas Taylor in England, by K. Raine.--Thomas Taylor in America, by G. M. Harper.--Biographical accounts of Thomas Taylor.--Concerning the beautiful.--The hymns of Orpheus.--Concerning the cave of the nymphs.--A dissertation on the Eleusinian and Bacchic mysteries.--Introduction to The fable of Cupid and Psyche.--The Platonic philosopher's creed.--An apology for the fables of Homer.--Bibliography (p. -538).
There is considerable debate amongst philosophers as to the basic philosophical problem Wittgenstein is attempting to solve in _Philosophical Investigations_. In this bold and original work, Meredith Williams argues that it is the problem of "normative similarity". In _Blind Obedience_ Williams demonstrates how Wittgenstein criticizes traditional, representationalist theories of language by employing the ‘master/novice’ distinction of the learner, arguing that this distinction is often overlooked but fundamental to understanding philosophical problems about mind and language. The book not only provides (...) revealing discussions of Wittgenstein’s corpus but also intricate analyses of the work of Brandom, Dummett, Frege, Sellars, Davidson, Cavell and others. These are usefully compared in a bid to better situate Wittgenstein’s non-intellectualist, non-theoretical approach and to highlight is unique features. (shrink)
Gabriele Taylor presents a philosophical investigation of the "ordinary" vices traditionally seen as "death to the soul": sloth, envy, avarice, pride, anger, lust, and gluttony. In the course of a richly detailed discussion of individual and interrelated vices, which complements recent work by moral philosophers on virtue, she shows why these "deadly sins" are correctly so named and grouped together.
Many think that properties are powers. However, whilst some claim that properties are pure powers, others claim that properties are powerful qualities. In this paper, I argue that the canonical formulation of the powerful qualities view is no different from the pure powers view. Contrary to appearances, the two positions accept the same view of properties. Thus, the debate between them rests on an illusion. I draw out some consequences of this surprising result for issues over property individuation. Along the (...) way, I argue that all existing objections to the powerful qualities view fail. (shrink)