Testing the new site engine

This is the first time I'm attempting a markdown page in vim. There's some fun stuff, like python syntax highlighting. I'll take the opportunity to record some very simple date functions I find handy.

from datetime import datetime, date, timedelta
import re

def now(): return datetime.now ...
more ...

Describing Qualia

A few weeks ago, a student in my MA course posted a question that took a little while to answer. I'm including it, and my answer here for reference.

Can someone please explain to me how qualia links into what constitutes the self? I seriously cannot see the correlation ...

more ...

An idea for a dialogue

An idea for a dialogue:

Although perhaps gimmicky-

“What ever happened to the dialectic?” :: “I don’t understand.” “The Dialectic. It was a style of debating people in conversation. Like a form of interrogation, but without a goal. Other than to think about ideas from a different angle.” :: “Angle? I ...

more ...

I will repeat myself

I will repeat myself, since you appear to have trouble reading:

Unlawful action was never the scandal. That the NSA was entirely capable of acting illegally with no oversight or accountability, using powers it never disclosed -- even to Congress, under oath -- is the thousand-pound gorilla in the room that you ...

more ...

When is it time to tell

When is it time to tell humanity of the planet's extinction? sharpen it. asked 46 sec ago - 4 day left to answer

I was kept up tonight by an article (below) about the predicted climate change for the next few years. It struck me enough to ask:

If you ...

more ...

Faces of God 2

Faces of God

It may seem odd to some people that I would begin a book like this one with a discussion of God, or even that the topic should come up at all. Yet the nature of the project we’re about to undertake challenges so many deeply held ...

more ...

Vegetable Lasagna

Date Category Recipes

I'll clean this up later. Barilla lasagna pasta or better.
Bottom layer:

- 2 eggplant, sliced and fried with olive oil and garlic
- 3 zucchini, sliced and fried with olive oil and garlic
- ground black pepper

Middle layer

- 2 onions, 3 bell bell peppers chopped finely, 3 carrots shredded, mix ...

more ...

There ought to be a limit

There ought to be a limit to the way we think of free will's influence on responsibility in the first place. It's rarely the case, if ever, that a person's actions aren’t already predetermined by a complex of prior judgments, personal outlook and knowledge, and circumstance ...

more ...

Intentionality 1

Te Mark of the Mental Alberto Voltolini (Uni of Turin)

B3 makes mental states irreducible to intentional states - but necessary, not sufficient (“BC”)

“Intentionalism is the view that all mental states exhibit intentionality” -Crane

Pure vs Impure vs Spurious intentionalism (reduc. or nonreduc.) (chalmers, crane, dretske) unimportant

Moderate or radical ...

more ...

Share", thanks to Apple

"Share", thanks to Apple and an unknown UI designer, have by fiat changed the meaning of that word. Where once upon a time we would pick and choose whom to demonstrate that "sharing is caring," now we can only tweet, post, or announce. "Share", which once brought us a chance ...

more ...

Silencing, Rhetoric, and Argumentation

While sick in bed today I've had the rare chance to catch up on my "other" inbox, which consists of about forty webcomics, four news feeds, and sixteen various philosophy blogs. It's not particularly normal for me to follow a train of thought in any of this, but ...

more ...

Plen 7 - Kathleen

Color - Synasthesia Chromatic reference acquisition - “color concepts” (Hahn, Martin) Problem (from 1877 Darwin on challenge in learning color terms): children pick up and categorize color terms (using objects as references to the color ?) before applying them correctly (1977, Johnson “development of color knowledge in preschool children”) (1988, Soja “young children ...

more ...

Trust and Consequence

I've been tinkering with an idea about trust, and its relation to organized religions and other socially insular groups. Trust between individuals, I felt, was bolstered by a mutual, implicit commitment to some set of prescribed moral rules. However, it struck me yesterday that in commerce a similar sort ...

more ...

On Writing

People never mention how horrendously painful the process of writing is. There are plenty of suggestions for improving skills, developing habits, and dealing with writer's block, but none of this addresses the fundamental struggle with writing anything. Our brains are wired for speech, our thoughts rely primarily on the ...

more ...

it's rare

It's rare when a tv show actually teaches. It's rarer still when it illuminates a problem wholly unrelated to its content. Over the last two weeks our house watched through the first season of Gordon Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares (U.S.), and thanks to its worst examples, I ...

more ...

Scratchpad

I'm going a bit slowly through the study guide and only tonight noticed that Frankish recommends this resource at the end of part II, but doesn't provide a link. It's at http://consc.net/online and includes his own selections from the much larger PhilPapers database. Even ...

more ...

On Perspective

No man is an island, is something we say to express the fundamental connection we hold with one another. The emotions we share, and the events of our lives which we communicate to one another creates a network of experiences that none of us can escape. Yet in another sense ...

more ...

Status - Gezi of Thrones

In Martin's world, love is tragic, and invites retribution through murderous spite. It's easy to hope that our world is not unfair, that love will triumph, but justice is only as real as we make it.

more ...

Closing session

Grounding - action and perception on cognition

Language as amodal perceptual system

Frank Dugan (doing debunking)

“We inherited a mistake - that mistake is reference” Jesse Prinz

T: computational processes are not phenomenal.

more ...

Notes on Riga - Concepts and Perceptions

Reference: Mental Representation

Ok. So. Concepts are taken to be images or representations, and the argument is whether they influence our sensory perceptions or not, and to what extent.

Perceptions are taken to be representational, but then the question is "representational of what?" (all representational states have their content in ...

more ...

Symposium

Gross, Steven - “Cognitive Penetrability and Language”

(1993 Pylshyn) Cognition : organism’s goals & beliefs Affects: - Perception: 3 q’s - whether some part of perception is cog. Impen. - perceptual experience? - perceptual judgments?

Corresponding to Lang: - cog imp linguistic input analyzer? - quasi-p experience of language? - are meta linguistic quasi-perceptual judgments cog pen?

(1 ...

more ...

Plen 8 - Chalmers, David

“Perception and Skepticism: From Eden to the Matrix”

Eden model- primitiveness (primitive red, etc) “Fall” - objects don't have primitive color qualities (See Kathleen's plen) - surface reflectances are identified as the color Ordinary color id'd with physical causes of color perception

Imperfect colors are the norm; imperfect veridicality ...

more ...

Plen 6 - O'Callaghan, Casey

“Not All Perceptual Experience is Modality Specific”

(See: “Cross-Modal Experiences” Proceedings of the Aristelian Society 2011, MacPherson ; cross-modal experiences)

  • controversial (* why?) question of distinctiveness of any given phenomenal x

Unimodal vs. multimodal

Causal links: (Ventriloquism , Mcgurk)

2001 stone - “subjective simultaneity” “Cross-modal sensory grouping” intermodal rhythm & meter perception Huang 2012)

more ...

Plen 5 - MacPherson, Fiona

“Cognitive Penetration and Nonconceptual Content”

Perceptual experiences as having non-c content -for x to represent the world is to say x has content

We think exp have one or more of the following props -fineness of grain -unit-free representation -analogue in nature -can be had by children/animals -explains acquisition ...

more ...

Plen 4 - Pecher, Diane

“Motor Affordances in Visual Working Memory”

T: None.

  • switching modalities between stimuli incurs (cognitive?) processing costs H: same for m. reps (Banana-yellow & gemstone-glitters) vs. (banana-yellow and marble-cool)

Supports thesis that MR “runs” on sensorimotor system

Affordances: potential actions to be performed with objects by organism

Visual working memory- do affordances ...

more ...

Plen 3 - Goldstone, Rob

“Hacking our own Perceptual Systems”

Is perception at odds with formal cognition (reasoning)?

Perceptual-to-formal development occurs, but “perception can be tailored” to do the “right thing” - formal reasoning possible via, not despite perception.

Algebra as example.

  • (Is Barsalou in here?)

(5 - 1) x (2 + 2) / (6 - 2) x (1 + 1 ...

more ...

Plen 2 - Noe, Alva

Perception (conception?) as an Activity

“Concepts as Practical Knowledge”

Kant- concepts are in the making of judgments (“creatures” of j), necessary for perceptual knowledge

Frege- contrast in that nothing here psych. linked.

In common- “concepts are expressions of understanding in the judgmental mode.”

What about “..in the perceptual mode”? - words ...

more ...

Plen 1- Millikan, Ruth

(1984, Millikan)

T: There are no concepts (empirically-based).

N-D space individuals ; d on properties. Thus, each obj. is described by being at one point.

No particular points actually (currently) exist.

Paths between collections of points describing generic objects:?

Objects and properties are not specific points, but describe shapes in n-space ...

more ...

Lieto, Antonio - Frixione, Marcello

Concepts and Perceptions

Concepts with axes (axis1, 2)

What are “typicality effects”? - apparently related to wittgenstein’s “family of resemblances”

Categorization as “exagon” or “prime number” (monotonic) “System2”

Conjunction Fallacy- lending greater credence to statement with more terms of satisfaction

Not a full overlap of dimensions T and K (typicality ...

more ...

Hamami, Yacin

  • light’s properties lack temporal restriction except in change of spatial position and thus reveal curvature in space

See slides

Inferential concepts are distinct from sensorily held concepts

Concepts as “Simulators” - Barsalou

Hilbert has non-visually-phenomenal inferential concepts. Kant denies this. Barsalou constructs simulators. What is the phenomenology of these simulators ...

more ...

Abruzzo, Vincent

Two theories of concepts - neo-empiricist - amodal

So.. Given an amodal view of concepts, we might have to interpret our own propositional attitudes from our phenomenal access

more ...

Benbaji, Hagit

“K-properties” (properties which make a thing a kind of thing) Thesis K: K-props are represented in experience

Perceptual Knowledge seems to be “phenomenally inert” (?!)

See slides in cam memory- room had terrible acoustics, hard to follow. Word of the day appeared to be “appreciations” qua judgments

more ...

Cressida

Publicity requirement: concepts are shareable (quotes Frege 1948, Fodor 1998, Prinz 2002)

Externalism- concepts can be contributed to by facts/causes without awareness

Internalism- Denies this

Argument here is that publicity req. mitigates against accepting the internalist view.

Problem - changes in external content alone do not affect behavior; internal content ...

more ...

Elmar

Representational Mismatch (John perry, 1986) Regarding articulation - specifically, overarticulation (see monadic hypnosis)

  • see “taxidermia”
more ...

Shelvin, Henry

Generic Phenomenology

Examples draw on ambiguity in phenomenology. Content as accuracy conditions. Assumes perceptual experiences have this content.

  • How does he separate between generic and specific phenomenological without an appeal to arbitrary limits?
more ...

Munton, Jessie

Cognitive penetration : Concepts can penetrate visual processing Presents an epistemological problem, as all experiences and thinking of things becomes theory-laden

Modularity threatens CP

more ...

Caiani, silvano

Direct perception (and cognitive penetrability)

Cp-contents of perception are changed or colored by beliefs Is -cp possible? - empirical question!

Inferential perception vs, DP-IP is multistage, with concepts, etc. DP says stimulus is enough (Gibson : all information in the stimulus, 1979)

Differences conveyed as network topologies: DP is linear processing, Ip ...

more ...

Michael, John Andrew

Resisting Descriptivist terms for intentional concepts

Descriptive theories of reference stand in contrast to Causal theories. Eliniativist Arg: (Churchland) - intentional concepts defined by folk psychology are likely false. -presumes descriptive account- are non-referring

Problem with causal theories ; continuity too easy Reference sometimes ambiguous “The qua problem”

Some causal theories - Nomological ...

more ...

Chow, Sheldon

Lawrence Barsalou’s “Perceptual Symbol Systems Jesse Prinz’s Concept Empiricism

File model of cognition (Fodor)

Neo-Empiricism (Locke- “Nothing in the intellect that wasn't in the senses”) Image-like ideas

Mental rep. Are “perceptual symbols” (Barsalou) Mental representations are multimodal

Reps-> concepts related symbols become organized into a simulator” - a ...

more ...

Andy Clark - opening

Andy Clark - University of Edinbergh

Hierarchical Predictive Processing (HPP)

“Top-down” - reversal of stimulus driven perception. Meta-Bayesian; predicts the sensory signal from stored information about the world.

“While trapped in a cabin with Dennett in Maine” - presenting the Paleontologist’s problem- students cheating by copying. Devised SLICE, a program that required ...

more ...

17 April 2013

The problem with ethics in most descriptions and treatments, from Aristotle, through Locke, and since Rawls, Nozick, and Parfit is that the sorts of questions we ask, such as “what is the good?” or “should we do X?” all seem to rely on a conception of the surrounding environment as ...

more ...

'School Blather: Identity'

I haven't been filling out this blog much after setting it up primarily because I've been occupied with schoolwork. This past February I started in on my MA work for the Open U and it's been rough going. I'd love to imagine myself somewhat skilled at ...

more ...

Intentionality 3

Elisabeth Sacchi

Strong and Weak I deny qualitative states

Inverted Earth- phenom. properties are narrow (Lycan)

Strong I can be pure impure or spurious Pure- on int. content Impure- on int. mode Spurious- mode+content

Mode I- to-me component + aspectual => phenomenally conscious state Not a type of representationalism, but Fregean ...

more ...

Grasso Bibliography

Balduzzi, D., & Tononi, G. (2008). Integrated Information in Discrete Dynamical Systems: Motivation and Theoretical Framework. PLoS Computational Biology, 4(6), e1000091. Chalmers, D. J. (1995). Facing up to the problem of consciousness. Journal of Consciousness Studies, 2(3), 200-219. Chalmers, D. J. (2002). Consciousness and its place in nature. In ...

more ...

Mind and Metaphysics 3

Was Husserl Right? Hynek Janousek (Czech Uni)

Brentano's three categories Existential forms of judgments

Mill-no general concepts, but complexes

Husserl's generalizing of concepts stems from concomitant-cy of impressions, for which we first can attend to and then lose as the identifying aspect?

Husserl (via Brentano?) charges Mill (I ...

more ...

Mind and Metaphysics 2

Brentano, Goff, and the Unity of Consciousness Or: Brentano and the Combination Problem Ludwig Jaskolla (Hochschule für Philosophie, München) ludwig.jaskolla@hfph.de

The combination problem- to criticize panpsychist theories

Finding a substantial account of panpsychism is hard, but the common thread is “type-F monism” -the intrinsic properties of fundamental ...

more ...

Mind and Metaphysics 1

Unconscious Consciousness: Re-examining a Neglected Hypothesis in the Metaphysics of Mind
Itay Shani (Kyung Hee University)

Definitions (photo) Experimental evidence for unconscious: Automaticity Blindsit Implicit memory Subliminal perception Anticipation Insight and incubation Implicit emotions, motives

But what does UCC mean today? Presumably, C is ’phenomenal C’ -qualia,msentience, experience, etc ...

more ...

Plen 4

Brentano's Concept of Mind Uriah Kriegel (Uni of Arizona, now in France)

Thesis: For B, the concept of mind is a natural kind

Quoted B “int is the mark of the mental” - but this is only one account of six! (Photo)

So why isn't inner perception primary? -traces ...

more ...

Phenomenal Intentionality 3

Phenomenal Neutral Monism Olivier Massin (Uni of Genevé)

(Pamphlet)

Write a list of types of mental objects (classes of emotions, judgments, representations, etc)

more ...

Phenomenal Intentionality 2

Phenomenal Intentionality and its Alleged Hard Problem Amir Horowitz (Open University of Israel)

PI doesn't seem to give rise to the same anti-physicalist args of the HP

Horgan and Tienson (photo)

Introspection supports this view of phenomenal intentionality (PI) “Experiences have their contents intrinsically”

But: introspection by itself cannot ...

more ...

Phenomenal Intentionality 1

Strong Phenomenal Intentionality vs. the Holism of Non-Demonstrative Inference Anders Nes (CSMN, Uni of Oslo) anders.nes@csmn.uio.no

’strong’ phenomenal int- Any int state I wi content p Either (a) is phenom. conscious Or (b) depends on phenom conscious states (Kriegel, Searle, G. Strawson, Brentano)

AW claims background ...

more ...

Plen 3.2

Frank Brentano’s Two Theses on Consciousness Denis Fisette (Université du Québec à Montréal)

(Austrian/German Phil of Mind) B advocates a “Pre-reflexive”, intransitive C.

Thesis 1 Every mental phenomenon is (a) consciousness Jeder physische Akt ist (ein) Bewußtsein Thesis 2 Every mental act is conscious Jeder physische Akt ist ...

more ...

Plen 3.1

Consciousness as a By-product Mark Textor (King’s College)

What can we get out of Brentano’s ideas? Living in a post-Fregean world...

Connects back to Aris. Dilemma: (pamphlet)

B- ont of pleasure: pleas. “piggybacks” on the source sensory perception. ... If this is the case, what sensory perception does the ...

more ...

Plen 2

Brentano on the Impact of Psychology on Philosophy Johannes L. Brandl (Uni Salzburg, Uni Fribourg) *recommends speaking to Martine Nida-Rummelin

B's mission: radical turnaround in phil. by providing help from psychology

In current Phil Brentanian themes
intentionality
inner C

How to get back to B's mission? His claims ...

more ...

Intentionality 2

Intentionality Upgraded Assaf (open U of Israel)

Peacocke (1983)- “size and shape constancy”

Puts forward a view of “modal intentionalism” which states (according to Assaf) that the counterfactual intentional state plus the phenomenological content form the mental state.

more ...

Plen 1.2

Benefits of Intentional Objects Arkadiusz “Arek” Chrudzimski (Uni of Szczecin)

Intentional state basic description: Subject => intentional state => object

Existential generalization (and substitutivity ?) fails in intentional contexts I.e. “John is thinking of Tristan”, “Tristan is the lover of Isolde” != “John is thinking of the lover of Isolde”

We can postulate ...

more ...

Plen 1.1

Time-Consciousness: From Brentano to Stern Barry Dainton (Uni of Liverpool)

Brentano's contribution being that unity of C is intrinsic

Problem with B’s time-C descr: unclear William James in Princ. Of Psych - problem of apparent motion

B postulated a “new form of C”- experience of succession at right angles ...

more ...

Martinich 119-3

“Some people believe that abortion is justified, because a woman has the right to do whatever she wants with her own body; and having an abortion is doing something with her own body.”

more ...

Question on Frankfurt

Then if you don't mind, I have a rather specific question regarding an essay by Harry Frankfurt from the recommended pre-reading collection on Free Will (Oxford, Gary Watson, Ed.). The essay's name is “Alternate Possibilities and Moral Responsibility”, and in it Frankfurt argues for a kind of compatibilism ...

more ...

Internal Speech and God


I have a severe issue with what appears to be the overriding principle of Atheism as I've often heard it stated. My issue is that, given what people say God is, they profess that people who believe in their own characterization are wrong to believe that there's an ...

more ...


First Principles - What’s Wrong With Liberalism?

In this interesting result to my search for "Why is Liberalism Wrong?" Ryszard Legutko presents a straw man named Liberalism and proceeds to attack it. There's a good point made about separating the goals of egalitarianism from liberalism, but otherwise I have a sneaking suspicion that his aim is ...

more ...

No intuitions no relativism » 3:AM Magazine

HC: To get into issues in philosophy of language, one can never read Kripke’s Naming and Necessity enough. It’s written the way philosophy should be written: it’s clear, it has beautiful arguments, it’s original, it’s deep, and it’s almost entirely true. It’s just ...

more ...

Aachari Murgh (Pickle-Style Chicken)

Date Category Recipes


Murgh Aachari - Serve with Pickle


Murgh Aachari: Recipe Expliciter



Aachari Powder

Powdlerize
Amount Substance Acceptable Replacements
1 tsp cumin seeds ground cumin seeds
1 tsp Fennel Seeds ground fennel seeds
1 tsp chili powder no substitute
1 tsp yellow mustard seeds brown mustard seeds, or even a good dijon mustard ...
more ...

The Burrito Challenge

The hallmark of philosophical acuity is the ability to explain in rich detail and flawless clarity humanity's most commonly made logical errors. It requires philosophical genius to make these errors obvious to the lowest common denominator in any society. Thankfully, genius does not need to be housed within one ...

more ...

Goan Vindaloo

Date Category Recipes

Gravy Ingredients


Amount Substance Acceptable Replacements
2 tsps cumin seeds ground cumin seeds
5 thai peppers dried chili peppers, or 2 habaneros -- to taste
1 tsp black peppercorns ground black pepper
1 tsp cardamon seeds ground cardamon
1 1/2 tsps black mustard seeds brown mustard seeds, or even a ...

more ...

An Argument for Atheism

A little while ago on Stack Exchange, I came across a question asking for a "rigorous argument for Atheism". I tried out an answer and picked up a few votes from the international peanut gallery.

I thought I'd provide the question and answer here again, and maybe a little ...

more ...