Intelligent design theorist William Dembski has proposed an ``explanatory filter'' for distinguishing between events due to chance,lawful regularity or design. We show that if Dembski's filter were adopted as a scientific heuristic, some classical developments in science would not be rational, and that Dembski's assertion that the filter reliably identifies rarefied design requires ignoring the state of background knowledge. If background information changes even slightly, the filter's conclusion will vary wildly. Dembski fails to overcome Hume's objections to arguments from design.
Intelligent design advocate William Dembski has introduced a measure of information called "complex specified information", or CSI. He claims that CSI is a reliable marker of design by intelligent agents. He puts forth a "Law of Conservation of Information" which states that chance and natural laws are incapable of generating CSI. In particular, CSI cannot be generated by evolutionary computation. Dembski asserts that CSI is present in intelligent causes and in the flagellum of Escherichia coli, and concludes that neither have (...) natural explanations. In this paper, we examine Dembski's claims, point out significant errors in his reasoning, and conclude that there is no reason to accept his assertions. (shrink)
In this response to essays by Barbara J. King, Gregory R. Peterson, Wesley J. Wildman, and Nancy R. Howell, I present arguments to counter some of the exciting and challenging questions from my colleagues. I take the opportunity to restate my argument for an interdisciplinary public theology, and by further developing the notion of transversality I argue for the specificity of the emerging theological dialogue with paleoanthropology and primatology. By arguing for a hermeneutics of the body, I respond to (...) criticism of my notion of human uniqueness and argue for strong evolutionary continuities, as well as significant discontinuities, between primates, humans, and other hominids. In addition, I answer critical questions about theological methodology and argue how the notion of human uniqueness, theologically restated as the image of God, is enriched by transversally appropriating scientific notions of species specificity and embodied personhood. (shrink)
This paper is an extended exploration of Mead's phrase the emergence of the novel. I describe and characterize emergent systems-complex dynamical systems that display behavior that cannot be predicted from a full and complete description of the component units of the system. Emergence has become an influential concept in contemporary cognitive science [A. Clark Being there, Cambridge: MIT Press], complexity theory [W. Bechtel & R.C. Richardson Discovering complexity, Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press], artificial life [R.A. Brooks & P. Maes Artificial (...) life IV, Cambridge: MIT Press; C.G. Langton Artificial life III, Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley; C.G. Langton et al. Artificial life II, Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley), and robotics [S. Forrest Emergent computation, Cambridge: MIT Press]. I propose that novelty is a necessary property of emergent systems, and I'll explore a specific kind of emergent system: an improvisational theater ensemble. This is an example of emergence in a small social group, which I call collaborative emergence to emphasize several important contrasts with other complex systems that manifest emergence, such as connectionist networks and Alife simulations. (shrink)
There is currently great controversy over the contribution antimicrobial use in animal agriculture has made to antimicrobial resistance in pathogenic bacteria with negative consequences for human health. In light of this, the approval process for antimicrobials used in US animal agriculture, known as New Animal Drug Application or NADA, is currently being revised by the federal government. We explore the public deliberations over the development of these new policies focusing our attention on the interaction between pharmaceutical companies and the U.S. (...) Food and Drug Administration. What appears to be an antagonistic public discourse is examined in terms of its ability to simultaneously legitimate the roles of the Food and Drug Administration as the official arbiter of policy on antimicrobial use in animal agriculture and as a protector of the public welfare, as well as the role of pharmaceutical companies as the producers of safe and effective products necessary for the protection of public well-being. (shrink)
Knobe (2003a, 2003b, 2004b) and others have demonstrated the surprising fact that the valence of a side-effect action can affect intuitions about whether that action was performed intentionally. Here we report the results of an experiment that extends these findings by testing for an analogous effect regarding knowledge attributions. Our results suggest that subjects are less likely to find that an agent knows an action will bring about a side-effect when the effect is good than when it is bad. It (...) is further argued that these findings, while preliminary, have important implications for recent debates within epistemology about the relationship between knowledge and action. (shrink)
A restriction of R-Mingle with the variable-sharing property and the Ackermann properties is defined. From an intuitive semantical point of view, this restriction is an alternative to Anderson and Belnap’s logic of entailment E.
What allows MNCs to maintain their sustainability practices over the long-term? This is an important but under-examined question. To address this question, we investigate both the development and sustenance of sustainability practices. We use the dynamic capabilities perspective, rooted in resource-based view literature, as the theoretical basis. We argue that MNCs that simultaneously pursue both higher R&D intensity and higher internationalization are more capable of developing and maintaining sustainability practices. We test our hypotheses using longitudinal panel data from 1989 to (...) 2009. Results suggest that MNCs that have a combination of both high R&D intensity and high internationalization are (i) likely to develop more sustainability practices and (ii) are likely to maintain more of those practices over a long-term. As a corollary, MNCs that have a combination of both low R&D and low internationalization usually (i) end up developing little or no sustainability practices and (ii) find it difficult to sustain whatever little sustainability practices they might have developed. (shrink)
l. There is an antinomy in Hare's thought between Ought-Implies-Can and No-Indicatives-from-Imperatives. It cannot be resolved by drawing a distinction between implication and entailment. 2. Luther resolved this antinomy in the l6th century, but to understand his solution, we need to understand his problem. He thought the necessity of Divine foreknowledge removed contingency from human acts, thus making it impossible for sinners to do otherwise than sin. 3. Erasmus objected (on behalf of Free Will) that this violates Ought-Implies-Can which he (...) supported with Hare-style ordinary language arguments. 4. Luther a) pointed out the antinomy and b) resolved it by undermining the prescriptivist arguments for Ought-Implies-Can. 5. We can reinforce Luther's argument with an example due to David Lewis. 6. Whatever its merits as a moral principle, Ought-Implies-Can is not a logical truth and should not be included in deontic logics. Most deontic logics, and maybe the discipline itself, should therefore be abandoned. 7. Could it be that Ought-Conversationally-Implies-Can? Yes - in some contexts. But a) even if these contexts are central to the evolution of Ought, the implication is not built into the semantics of the word; b) nor is the parallel implication built into the semantics of orders; and c) in some cases Ought conversationally implies Can, only because Ought-Implies-Can is a background moral belief. d) Points a) and b) suggest a criticism of prescriptivism - that Oughts do not entail imperatives but that the relation is one of conversational implicature. 8. If Ought-Implies-Can is treated as a moral principle, Erasmus' argument for Free Will can be revived (given his Christian assumptions). But it does not 'prove' Pelagianism as Luther supposed. A semi-Pelagian alternative is available. (shrink)
This essay examines the origin(s) of genotype-environment interaction, or G×E. "Origin(s)" and not "the origin" because the thesis is that there were actually two distinct concepts of G×E at this beginning: a biometric concept, or \[G \times E_B\] , and a developmental concept, or \[G \times E_D \] . R. A. Fisher, one of the founders of population genetics and the creator of the statistical analysis of variance, introduced the biometric concept as he attempted to resolve one of the main (...) problems in the biometric tradition of biology - partitioning the relative contributions of nature and nurture responsible for variation in a population. Lancelot Hogben, an experimental embryologist and also a statistician, introduced the developmental concept as he attempted to resolve one of the main problems in the developmental tradition of biology - determining the role that developmental relationships between genotype and environment played in the generation of variation. To argue for this thesis, I outline Fisher and Hogben's separate routes to their respective concepts of G × E; then these separate interpretations of G × E are drawn on to explicate a debate between Fisher and Hogben over the importance of G × E, the first installment of a persistent controversy. Finally, Fisher's \[G \times E_B\] and Hogben's \[G \times E_D \] are traced beyond their own work into mid-2Oth century population and developmental genetics, and then into the infamous IQ Controversy of the 1970s. (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)
Robert Rosen’s (M,R)-systems are a class of relational models that define organisms. The realization of relational models plays a central role in his study of life, itself. Biology becomes identified with the class of material realizations of a certain kind of relational organization, exhibited in (M,R)-systems. In this paper I describe several realizations of (M,R)-systems, and in particular alternate realizations of the replication component.
This paper first shows that some versions of the logic R of Relevance do not satisfy the relevance principle introduced by Anderson and Belnap, the principle of which is generally accepted as the principle for relevance. After considering several possible (but defective) improvements of the relevance principle, this paper presents a new relevance principle for (three versions of) R, and explains why this principle is better than the original and others.
We study the filter ℒ*(A) of computably enumerable supersets (modulo finite sets) of an r-maximal set A and show that, for some such set A, the property of being cofinite in ℒ*(A) is still Σ0 3-complete. This implies that for this A, there is no uniformly computably enumerable “tower” of sets exhausting exactly the coinfinite sets in ℒ*(A).
The game theoretical approach to R&D cooperation does not investigate the role of trust in the initiation and success of R&D cooperation: it either assumes that firms are non-opportunists or that the R&D cooperation is supported by an incentive mechanism that eliminates opportunism. In contrast, the present paper focuses on these issues by introducing incomplete information and two types of firms: opportunist and non-opportunist. Defining trust as the belief of each firm that its potential collaborator will respect the contract, it (...) identifies the trust conditions under which firms initiate R&D alliances and contribute to their success. The higher the spillovers, the higher the level of trust required to initiate R&D cooperation for non-opportunists, while the inverse holds for opportunists. (shrink)
In this chapter we argue that Robert Hare's psychopathy checklist revised (PCL-R) offers a construct of psychopathy that is valid enough for philosophical investigations of the moral and legal responsibility of psychopathic offenders.
Wesley Wildman is one of the foremost philosophers of religion calling for the evolution of the discipline from its present narrow focus on theistic beliefs to become a discipline concerned with religions in all their diversity. Towards this end, he proposes that philosophers of religion understand what they do as multidisciplinary comparative inquiry. This article assesses his proposal.
Values are an important part of human existence, his society and human relations. All social, economic, political, and religious problems are in one sense is reflection of this special abstraction of human knowledge. We are living in a globalized village and thinking much about values rather than practice of it. If we define religion and spirituality we can say that religion is a set of beliefs and rituals that claim to get a person in a right relationship with God, and (...) spirituality is a focus on spiritual things and the spiritual world instead of physical/earthly things. If we think rationally we can find the major evils related to religion exiting in present society are due to lack of proper understanding of religion and spirituality. If we really know our own religions and values associated with it, we can create a beautiful world, full or love and respect for each and every human being. The proper knowledge and practice of any religion’s values can make an integrated man. In the book, The Buddha and His Dhamma, Dr. Ambedkar elucidated the significance and importance of Dhamma in human life. The Dhamma maintained purity of life, which meant abstains from lustful, evil practices. The Dhamma is a perfection of life and giving up craving. Dhamma’s righteousness means right relation of man to man in all sphere of life. The basic idea underlying religion is to create an atmosphere for the spiritual development of the individual. He said that Knowing the proper ways and means is more important than knowing the ideal. The major objective of this paper is to the study the religious philosophy of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar and to study how he established that religious and spiritual values enables religious people in particular and humanity at large to solve contemporary problems. (shrink)
This book argues that R.G. Collingwood developed a complete and coherent political philosophy of civilization. In making this case it also demonstrates that Collingwood's philosophical work comprises a unity in which, although there was development, there is no fundamental discontinuity between his earlier and later writings. A philosophy of civilization must situate its subject matter within the full context of human experience and therefore Collingwood's political philosophy of civilization must be situated within the context of his whole philosophy. The book (...) presents the case that Collingwood developed a coherent philosophy of politics and civilization, that this had its roots in both the early and the later work; and that his overall philosophical approach comprises a generally consistent and integrated whole. (shrink)