The use of a photomultiplier to measure the reduction in counting statistics noise (from the usual N1/2 form) which is expected to occur for squeezed coherent light is shown to lead to no reduction or to an increase of the noise unless the number of photons in a fundamental measuring time of the photomultiplier is very large. This fundamental time is estimated to be less than 10−13 sec for ordinary detectors. A technique for using squeezed states for determining the time (...) a photomultiplier takes to detect the presence of a photon is presented. (shrink)
This book is a translation of W.V. Quine's Kant Lectures, given as a series at Stanford University in 1980. It provide a short and useful summary of Quine's philosophy. There are four lectures altogether: I. Prolegomena: Mind and its Place in Nature; II. Endolegomena: From Ostension to Quantification; III. Endolegomena loipa: The forked animal; and IV. Epilegomena: What's It all About? The Kant Lectures have been published to date only in Italian and German translation. The present book is filled out (...) with the translator's critical Introduction, "The esoteric Quine?" a bibliography based on Quine's sources, and an Index for the volume. (shrink)
Vanguard anti-narrativist Galen Strawson declares personal memory unimportant for self-constitution. But what if lapses of personal memory are sustained by a morally reprehensible amnesia about historical events, as happens in the work of W.G. Sebald? The importance of memory cannot be downplayed in such cases. Nevertheless, contrary to expectations, a concern for memory needn’t ally one with the narrativist position. Recovery of historical and personal memory results in self-dissolution and not self-unity or understanding in Sebald’s characters. In the end, Sebald (...) shows how memory can be significant, even imperative, within a deeply anti-narrativist outlook on the self, memory, and history. (shrink)
There has been a great deal of critical discussion of Harry Frankfurt’s argument against the Principle of Alternative Possibilities (PAP), almost all of which has focused on whether the Frankfurt-style examples, which are designed to be counterexamples to PAP, can be given a coherent formulation. Recently, however, David Widerker has argued that even if Frankfurt-style examples can be given a coherent formulation, there is reason to believe that an agent in those examples could never be morally blameworthy for what she (...) has done. Therefore, such examples do not undermine a version of PAP restricted to blameworthiness. Widerker refers to his argument for this claim as the W-defense. I examine the W-defense in some detail, along with three recent replies to it by defenders of Frankfurt’s argument. I contend that each of these replies is problematic and, indeed, that two of them play directly into the hands of those seeking to defend PAP. I then develop my own reply to the W-defense by calling into question an assumption which is at the heart of that argument regarding the nature of moral blame. (shrink)
In an unsung yet excellent paper, W.Z. Harvey set out to explain how both Maimonides and Spinoza have similarly problematic views on the nature of the knowledge of good and evil. In it, he proposed an answer to solving the problem. In the many decades since, debates surrounding this topic have flourished. A recent paper by Joshua Parens, his conclusions mark a distinction between Spinoza and Maimonides that threaten to undermine Harvey’s solution to the problem. I will argue that, although (...) Parens’ distinction forces us to revise Harvey’s contention, Harvey’s argument is still generally valid. (shrink)
There are two motivations commonly ascribed to historical actors for taking up statistics: to reduce complicated data to a mean value (e.g., Quetelet), and to take account of diversity (e.g., Galton). Different motivations will, it is assumed, lead to different methodological decisions in the practice of the statistical sciences. Karl Pearson and W. F. R. Weldon are generally seen as following directly in Galton’s footsteps. I argue for two related theses in light of this standard interpretation, based on a reading (...) of several sources in which Weldon, independently of Pearson, reflects on his own motivations. First, while Pearson does approach statistics from this "Galtonian" perspective, he is, consistent with his positivist philosophy of science, utilizing statistics to simplify the highly variable data of biology. Weldon, on the other hand, is brought to statistics by a rich empiricism and a desire to preserve the diversity of biological data. Secondly, we have here a counterexample to the claim that divergence in motivation will lead to a corresponding separation in methodology. Pearson and Weldon, despite embracing biometry for different reasons, settled on precisely the same set of statistical tools for the investigation of evolution. (shrink)
Some physicists and philosophers argue that unitarily inequivalent representations in quantum field theory are mathematical surplus structure. Support for that view, sometimes called ‘algebraic imperialism’, relies on Fell’s theorem and its deployment in the algebraic approach to QFT. The algebraic imperialist uses Fell’s theorem to argue that UIRs are ‘physically equivalent’ to each other. The mathematical, conceptual, and dynamical aspects of Fell’s theorem will be examined. Its use as a criterion for physical equivalence is examined in detail and it is (...) proven that Fell’s theorem does not apply to the vast number of representations used in the algebraic approach. UIRs are not another case of theoretical underdetermination, because they make different predictions about ‘classical’ operators. These results are applied to the Unruh effect where there is a continuum of UIRs to which Fell’s theorem does not apply. _1_ Introduction _2_ Weak Equivalence and Physical Equivalence _3_ Mathematical Overview of Algebraic Quantum Field Theory _4_ Fell’s Theorem and Philosophical Responses to Weak Equivalence _5_ Weak Equivalence in C*-Algebras and W*-Algebras _6_ Classical Equivalence and Weak Equivalence _7_ Interlude: Is Weak Equivalence Really Physical Equivalence? _8_ The Unruh Effect _9_ Time Evolution and Symmetries _10_ Conclusions Appendix. (shrink)
J. Schumpeter is a key figure, even a seminal one, on technological innovation. Most economists who study technological innovation refer to Schumpeter and his pioneering role in introducing innovation into economic studies. However, despite having brought forth the concept of innovation in economic theory, Schumpeter provided few if any analyses of the process of innovation itself. This paper suggests that the origin of systematic studies on technological innovation owes its existence to the economist W. Rupert Maclaurin from MIT. In the (...) 1940s and 1950s, Maclaurin developed Schumpeter’s ideas, analyzing technological innovation as a process composed of several stages or steps, and proposed a theory of technological innovation, later called the linear model of innovation. The paper also argues that Maclaurin constructed one of the first taxonomies for measuring technological innovation. (shrink)
Este ensaio vem problematizar acerca da atualidade do conceito de indústria cultural ( Kulturindustrie ), no projeto da teoria crítica de Theodor W. Adorno, objetivando mostrar que as atuais limitações impostas ao debate derivam mais do fundamento não-dialético dos que apontam sua restrição do que da própria potência da teorização frankfurtiana.
Given W.V. Quine’s and Donald Davidson’s extensive agreement about much of the philosophy of language and mind, and the obvious methodological parallels between Quine’s radical translation and Davidson’s radical interpretation, many—including Quine and Davidson—are puzzled by their occasional disagreements. I argue for the importance of attending to these disagreements, not just because doing so deepens our understanding of these influential thinkers, but because they are in fact the shadows thrown from two distinct conceptions of philosophical inquiry: Quine’s “naturalism” and what (...) I call Davidson’s “humanism.” The clash between Quine and Davidson thus provides valuable insight into the history of analytic naturalism and its malcontents. (shrink)
There is a persistent state of confusion regarding the nature of the Unruh effect. We will argue that, in contrast to some interpretations thereof, the effect does not represent any novel physics and that, by its very nature, the effect is fundamentally unmeasurable in all experiments of the kind that have been contemplated until now. Also, we discuss what aspects connected with this effect one might consider as possibilities to be explored empirically and what their precise meaning may be (...) regarding the issue at hand. (shrink)
We present a stochastic theory for the nonequilibriurn dynamics of charges moving in a quantum scalar field based on the worldline influence functional and the close-time-path (CTP or in-in) coarse-grained effective action method. We summarize (1) the steps leading to a derivation of a modified Abraham-Lorentz-Dirac equation whose solutions describe a causal semiclassical theory free of runaway solutions and without pre-acceleration patholigies, and (2) the transformation to a stochastic effective action, which generates Abraham-Lorentz-Dirac-Langevin equations depicting the fluctuations of a particle’s (...) worldline around its semiclassical trajectory. We point out the misconceptions in trying to directly relate radiation reaction to vacuum fluctuations, and discuss how, in the framework that we have developed, an array of phenomena, from classical radiation and radiation reaction to the Unruh effect, are interrelated to each other as manifestations at the classical, stochastic and quantum levels. Using this method we give a derivation of the Unruh effect for the spacetime worldline coordinates of an accelerating charge. Our stochastic particle-field model, which was inspired by earlier work in cosmological backreaction, can be used as an analog to the black hole backreaction problem describing the stochastic dynamics of a black hole event horizon. (shrink)
W. H. Auden and Hannah Arendt belonged to a generation that experienced the catastrophic events of the mid-twentieth century, and they both sought to respond to the enormity of the novel phenomena they witnessed.
As one of the preeminent philosophers of the twentieth century, W. V. Quine made groundbreaking contributions to the philosophy of science, mathematical logic, and the philosophy of language. This collection of essays examines Quine's views, particularly his holism and naturalism, for their value to feminist theorizing today. Some contributors to this volume see Quine as severely challenging basic tenets of the logico-empiricist tradition in the philosophy of science—the analytic/synthetic distinction, verificationism, foundationalism—and accept various of his positions as potential resources for (...) feminist critique. Other contributors regard Quine as an unrepentant empiricist and, unlike feminists who seek to use or extend his arguments, they interpret his positions as far less radical and more problematic. In particular, critics and advocates of Quine's arguments that the philosophy of science should be "naturalized"—understood and pursued as an enterprise continuous with the sciences proper—disagree deeply about whether such a naturalized philosophy is "philosophy enough." Central issues at stake in these disagreements reflect current questions of special interest to feminists and also bridge the analytic and postmodern traditions. They include questions about whether and how the philosophy of science, as a form of practice, is or can be normative as well as questions concerning the implications of Quine's philosophy of language for the transparency and stability of meaning. In representing feminist philosophy centrally engaged with the analytic tradition, this volume is important not only for what it contributes to the understanding of Quine and naturalized epistemology but also for what it accomplishes in working against restrictive conceptions of the place of feminism within the discipline. Aside from the editors, the contributors are Kathryn Pyne Addelson, Louise M. Antony, Richmond Campbell, Lorraine Code, Jane Duran, Maureen Linker, Phyllis Rooney, and Paul A. Roth. (shrink)
Some physicists and philosophers argue that unitarily inequivalent representations in quantum field theory are mathematical surplus structure. Support for that view, sometimes called ‘algebraic imperialism’, relies on Fell’s theorem and its deployment in the algebraic approach to QFT. The algebraic imperialist uses Fell’s theorem to argue that UIRs are ‘physically equivalent’ to each other. The mathematical, conceptual, and dynamical aspects of Fell’s theorem will be examined. Its use as a criterion for physical equivalence is examined in detail and it is (...) proven that Fell’s theorem does not apply to the vast number of representations used in the algebraic approach. UIRs are not another case of theoretical underdetermination, because they make different predictions about ‘classical’ operators. These results are applied to the Unruh effect where there is a continuum of UIRs to which Fell’s theorem does not apply. 1 Introduction2 Weak Equivalence and Physical Equivalence3 Mathematical Overview of Algebraic Quantum Field Theory4 Fell’s Theorem and Philosophical Responses to Weak Equivalence5 Weak Equivalence in C*-Algebras and W*-Algebras6 Classical Equivalence and Weak Equivalence7 Interlude: Is Weak Equivalence Really Physical Equivalence?8 The Unruh Effect9 Time Evolution and Symmetries10 ConclusionsAppendix. (shrink)
In this paper rejection systems for the “nonsense-logic” W and the k-valued implicational-negational sentential calculi of Sobociński are given. Considered systems consist of computable sets of rejected axioms and only one rejection rule: the rejection version of detachment rule.
This Companion brings together a team of leading figures in contemporary philosophy to provide an in-depth exposition and analysis of Quine’s extensive influence across philosophy’s many subfields, highlighting the breadth of his work, and revealing his continued significance today. Provides an in-depth account and analysis of W.V.O. Quine’s contribution to American Philosophy, and his position as one of the late twentieth-century’s most influential analytic philosophers Brings together newly-commissioned essays by leading figures within contemporary philosophy Covers Quine’s work across philosophy of (...) logic, philosophy of language, ontology and metaphysics, epistemology, and more Explores his work in relation to the origins of analytic philosophy in America, and to the history of philosophy more broadly Highlights the breadth of Quine’s work across the discipline, and demonstrates the continuing influence of his work within the philosophical community. (shrink)