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  1. Qualitative Models in Computational Simulative Sciences: Representation, Confirmation, Experimentation.Nicola Angius - 2019 - Minds and Machines 29 (3):397-416.
    The Epistemology Of Computer Simulation has developed as an epistemological and methodological analysis of simulative sciences using quantitative computational models to represent and predict empirical phenomena of interest. In this paper, Executable Cell Biology and Agent-Based Modelling are examined to show how one may take advantage of qualitative computational models to evaluate reachability properties of reactive systems. In contrast to the thesis, advanced by EOCS, that computational models are not adequate representations of the simulated empirical systems, it is shown how (...)
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  • Computational Idealizations in Software Intensive Science: A Comment on Symons’ and Horner’s Paper.Nicola Angius - 2014 - Philosophy and Technology 27 (3):479-484.
    This commentary on John Symons’ and Jack Horner’s paper, besides sharing its main argument, challenges the authors’ statement that there is no effective method to evaluate software-intensive systems as a distinguishing feature of software intensive science. It is underlined here how analogous methodological limitations characterise the evaluations of empirical systems in non-software intensive sciences. The authors’ claim that formal methods establish the correctness of computational models rather than of the represented programme is here compared with the empirical adequacy problem typifying (...)
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  • Explaining Engineered Computing Systems’ Behaviour: The Role of Abstraction and Idealization.Nicola Angius & Guglielmo Tamburrini - 2017 - Philosophy and Technology 30 (2):239-258.
    This paper addresses the methodological problem of analysing what it is to explain observed behaviours of engineered computing systems, focusing on the crucial role that abstraction and idealization play in explanations of both correct and incorrect BECS. First, it is argued that an understanding of explanatory requests about observed miscomputations crucially involves reference to the rich background afforded by hierarchies of functional specifications. Second, many explanations concerning incorrect BECS are found to abstract away from descriptions of physical components and processes (...)
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  • On Malfunctioning Software.Giuseppe Primiero, Nir Fresco & Luciano Floridi - 2015 - Synthese 192 (4):1199-1220.
    Artefacts do not always do what they are supposed to, due to a variety of reasons, including manufacturing problems, poor maintenance, and normal wear-and-tear. Since software is an artefact, it should be subject to malfunctioning in the same sense in which other artefacts can malfunction. Yet, whether software is on a par with other artefacts when it comes to malfunctioning crucially depends on the abstraction used in the analysis. We distinguish between “negative” and “positive” notions of malfunction. A negative malfunction, (...)
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