Biological ontologies are used to organize, curate, and interpret the vast quantities of data arising from biological experiments. While this works well when using a single ontology, integrating multiple ontologies can be problematic, as they are developed independently, which can lead to incompatibilities. The Open Biological and Biomedical Ontologies Foundry was created to address this by facilitating the development, harmonization, application, and sharing of ontologies, guided by a set of overarching principles. One challenge in reaching these goals was that the (...) OBO principles were not originally encoded in a precise fashion, and interpretation was subjective. Here we show how we have addressed this by formally encoding the OBO principles as operational rules and implementing a suite of automated validation checks and a dashboard for objectively evaluating each ontology’s compliance with each principle. This entailed a substantial effort to curate metadata across all ontologies and to coordinate with individual stakeholders. We have applied these checks across the full OBO suite of ontologies, revealing areas where individual ontologies require changes to conform to our principles. Our work demonstrates how a sizable federated community can be organized and evaluated on objective criteria that help improve overall quality and interoperability, which is vital for the sustenance of the OBO project and towards the overall goals of making data FAIR. Competing Interest StatementThe authors have declared no competing interest. (shrink)
It is argued that the arguments put forward by Bernard Williams and Thomas Nagel in their widely influential exchange on the problem of moral luck are marred by a failure to (i) present a coherent understanding of what is involved in the notion of luck, and (ii) adequately distinguish between the problem of moral luck and the analogue problem of epistemic luck, especially that version of the problem that is traditionally presented by the epistemological sceptic. It is further claimed that (...) once one offers a more developed notion of luck and disambiguates the problem of moral luck from the problem of epistemic luck (especially in its sceptical guise), neither of these papers is able to offer unambiguous grounds for thinking that there is a problem of moral luck. Indeed, it is shown that insofar as these papers succeed in making a prima facie case for the existence of epistemic luck, it is only the familiar sceptical variant of this problem that they identify. (shrink)
Plato, Allan Bloom wrote, is "the most erotic of philosophers," and his Symposium is one of the greatest works on the nature of love ever written. This new edition brings together the English translation of the renowned Plato scholar and translator, Seth Benardete, with two illuminating commentaries on it: Benardete's "On Plato's _Symposium_" and Allan Bloom's provocative essay, "The Ladder of Love." In the _Symposium,_ Plato recounts a drinking party following an evening meal, where the guests include the poet (...) Aristophanes, the drunken Alcibiades, and, of course, the wise Socrates. The revelers give their views on the timeless topics of love and desire, all the while addressing many of the major themes of Platonic philosophy: the relationship of philosophy and poetry, the good, and the beautiful. (shrink)
"Seth examines the practical origins of much of the research undertaken by Arnold Sommerfeld at the University of Munich, some of which addressed problems carried over from his years of teaching at an engineering school"--OCLC.
When I tell you that it’s raining, I describe a way the world is—viz., rainy. I say something whose truth turns on how things are with the weather in the world. Likewise when I tell you that the weatherman thinks that it’s raining. Here the truth of what I say turns on how things are with the weatherman’s state of mind in the world. Likewise when I tell you that I think that it’s raining. Here the truth of what I (...) say turns on how things are with my state of mind in the world. (shrink)
We investigate a basic probabilistic dynamic semantics for a fragment containing conditionals, probability operators, modals, and attitude verbs, with the aim of shedding light on the prospects for adding probabilistic structure to models of the conversational common ground.
Epistemic modal operators give rise to something very like, but also very unlike, Moore's paradox. I set out the puzzling phenomena, explain why a standard relational semantics for these operators cannot handle them, and recommend an alternative semantics. A pragmatics appropriate to the semantics is developed and interactions between the semantics, the pragmatics, and the definition of consequence are investigated. The semantics is then extended to probability operators. Some problems and prospects for probabilistic representations of content and context are explored.
Spoken word recognition involves a perceptual tradeoff between the reliance on the incoming acoustic signal and knowledge about likely sound categories and their co-occurrences as words. This study examined how adult second language (L2) learners navigate between acoustic-based and knowledge-based spoken word recognition when listening to highly variable, multi-talker truncated speech, and whether this perceptual tradeoff changes as L2 listeners gradually become more proficient in their L2 after multiple months of structured classroom learning. First language (L1) Mandarin Chinese listeners and (...) L1 English-L2 Mandarin adult listeners took part in a gating experiment. The L2 listeners were tested twice—once at the start of their intermediate/advanced L2 language class and again two months later. L1 listeners were only tested once. Participants were asked to identify syllable-tone words that varied in syllable token frequency (high/low according to a spoken word corpus) and syllable-conditioned tonal probability (most probable/least probable in speech given the syllable). The stimuli were recorded by 16 different talkers and presented at eight gates ranging from onset-only (gate 1) through onset+40 ms increments (gates 2 through 7) to the full word (gate 8). Mixed-effects regression modeling was used to compare performance to our previous study which used single-talker stimuli (Wiener, Lee, & Tao, 2019). The results indicated that multi-talker speech caused both L1 and L2 listeners to rely greater on knowledge-based processing of tone. L1 listeners were able to draw on distributional knowledge of syllable-tone probabilities in early gates and switch to predominantly acoustic-based processing when more of the signal was available. In contrast, L2 listeners, with their limited experience with talker range normalization, were less able to effectively transition from probability-based to acoustic-based processing. Moreover, for the L2 listeners, the reliance on such distributional information for spoken word recognition appeared to be conditioned by the nature of the acoustic signal. Single-talker speech did not result in the same pattern of probability-based tone processing, suggesting that knowledge-based processing of L2 speech may only occur under certain acoustic conditions, such as multi-talker speech. (shrink)
This paper critiques a number of standard ways of understanding the role of the metalanguage in a semantic theory for natural language, including the idea that disquotation plays a nontrivial role in any explanatory natural language semantics. It then proposes that the best way to understand the role of a semantic metalanguage involves recognizing that semantics is a model-based science. The metalanguage of semantics is language for articulating features of the theorist's model. Models are understood as mediating instruments---idealized structures used (...) to represent select aspects of the world, aspects the theorist is seeking some theoretical understanding of. The aspect of reality we are seeking some understanding of in semantics is a dimension of human linguistic competence---informally, knowledge of meaning. (shrink)
I develop a conception of expressivism according to which it is chiefly a pragmatic thesis about some fragment of discourse, one imposing certain constraints on semantics. The first half of the paper uses credal expressivism about the language of probability as a stalking-horse for this purpose. The second half turns to the question of how one might frame an analogous form of expressivism about the language of deontic modality. Here I offer a preliminary comparison of two expressivist lines. The first, (...) expectation expressivism, looks again to Bayesian modelling for inspiration: it glosses deontically modal language as characteristically serving to express decision-theoretic expectation (expected utility). The second, plan expressivism, develops the idea (due to Gibbard 2003) that this language serves to express 'plan-laden' states of belief. In the process of comparing the views, I show how to incorporate Gibbard's modelling ideas into a compositional semantics for attitudes and modals, filling a lacuna in the account. I close with the question whether and how plan expressivism might be developed with expectation-like structure. (shrink)
This paper defends a counterexample to Modus Tollens, and uses it to draw some conclusions about the logic and semantics of indicative conditionals and probability operators in natural language. Along the way we investigate some of the interactions of these expressions with 'knows', and we call into question the thesis that all knowledge ascriptions have truth-conditions.
This is a study in the meaning of natural language probability operators, sentential operators such as probably and likely. We ask what sort of formal structure is required to model the logic and semantics of these operators. Along the way we investigate their deep connections to indicative conditionals and epistemic modals, probe their scalar structure, observe their sensitivity to contex- tually salient contrasts, and explore some of their scopal idiosyncrasies.
Marx did not approach the state in answer to some such broad and abstract philosophical question as: What is the state? Nor did he offer a full sociological or historical or analytic account of state institutions and functions, and there are hence clear and substantial dangers in extrapolating to all or most conditions an account which is, in large part, specific to bourgeois society. Failing a comprehensive and formal treatise on politics and the state, Marx's own discussion consists of a (...) number of scattered and not altogether consistent general observations and some detailed investigation of the role and character of the state in particular historical situations. It seems sensible, then, to begin an elucidation of his account of the state with a comment on the nature of his interest in the subject. Why did he need a theory of the state? At what points does it become important to his explanatory and his revolutionary doctrines? (shrink)
Focusing on cases which involve binding into epistemic modals with definite descriptions and quantifiers, I raise some new problems for standard approaches to all of these expressions. The difficulties are resolved in a semantic framework that is dynamic in character. I close with a new class of problems about de re readings within the scope of modals.
As Quine observed, the following sentence has a reading which, if true, would be of special interest to the authorities: Ralph believes that someone is a spy. This is the reading where the quantifier is naturally understood as taking wide scope relative to the attitude verb and as binding a variable within the scope of the attitude verb. This essay is interested in addressing the question what the semantic analysis of this kind of reading should look like from a Fregean (...) perspective—a perspective according to which attitude states are generally relations to structured Fregean thoughts composed of senses. The Fregean view faces a challenge of compositionality here. This essay describes the challenge and offers a response on the Fregean's behalf. (shrink)
This article engages in debates about the potential for aesthetics to be a positive, ethical, and moral frame for relating to the environment. Human‐environment relations are increasingly tied up with aesthetics. We problematize this trend by contending that aesthetics is an insufficient paradigm to motivate and shape environmentalism because it exceptionalizes some landscapes while devaluing others. This article uses four illustrative case studies to complicate aesthetic environmentalist frames. These case studies indicate that even when positive aesthetic qualities are deployed in (...) environmentalist advocacy, their usefulness is mitigated by a range of factors including: sensationalization, obfuscation, and further degradation. (shrink)
Philosophy as criticism of categories, by A. Seth.--The relation of philosophy to science, by R. B. Haldane and J. S. Haldane.--Logic as the science of knowledge, by B. Bosanquet.--The historical method, by W. R. Sorley.--The rationality of history, by D. G. Ritchie.--The philosophy of art, W. P. Ker.--The social organism, by H. Jones.--The struggle for existence, by J. Bonar.--Pessimism and the religious consciousness, by T. B. Kilpatrick.
The present article proposes an integration between cultural psychology and developmental science. Such an integration would draw on the cultural-psychology principle of culture-psyche interactions, as well as on the developmental-science principle of person↔︎context relations. Our proposed integration centers on acculturation, which is inherently both cultural and developmental. Specifically, we propose that acculturation is governed by specific transactions between the individual and the cultural context, and that different types of international migrants (e.g., legal immigrants, undocumented immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers, crisis migrants) (...) encounter quite different culture-psyche interactions and person↔︎context relations. We outline the ways in which various acculturation-related phenomena, such as acculturation operating at macro-level versus micro-level time scales, can be viewed through cultural and developmental lenses. The article concludes with future directions in research on acculturation as an intersection of cultural and developmental processes. (shrink)
Despite its enduring insights, Durkheim’s theory of suicide fails to account for a significant set of cases because of its overreliance on structural forces to the detriment of other possible factors. In this paper, we develop a new theoretical framework for thinking about the role of culture in vulnerability to suicide. We argue that by focusing on the cultural dynamics of excessive regulation, particularly at the meso level, a more robust sociological model for suicide could be offered that supplements structure-heavy (...) Durkheimian theory. In essence, we argue that the relevance of cultural regulation to suicide rests on the (1) degree to which culture is coherent in sociocultural places, (2) existence of directives related to prescribing or proscribing suicide, (3) degree to which these directives translate into internalized meanings affecting social psychological processes, and (4) degree to which the social space is bounded. We then illustrate how our new theory provides useful insights into three cases of suicide largely neglected within sociology: specifically, suicide clusters in high schools, suicide in the military, and suicides of “despair” among middle-aged white men. We conclude with implications for future sociological research on suicide and suicide prevention. (shrink)
The philosophical radicals.--Mr. Kidd on Western civilization.--Martineau's philosophy.--Herbert Spencer; the man and his work.--Reviews: Jones's Philosophy of Lotze (1893) Dewey's Studies in logical theory (1904) M'Taggart's Some dogmas of religion (1906)--Reprints: The philosophy of religion in Kant and Hegel (1882) Philosophy as criticism of categories (1883).
Indirect situationist critiques of virtue ethics grant that virtue exists and is possible to acquire, but contend that given the low probability of success in acquiring it, a person genuinely interested in behaving as morally as possible would do better to rely on situationist strategies - or, in other words, strategies of environmental or ecological engineering or control. In this paper, I develop a partial answer to this critique drawn from work in early Confucian ethics and in contemporary philosophy and (...) psychology. From early Confucian ethics, I lean on the concept of li, or ritual. Ritual represents both a set of situational manipulations that are especially effective at directly producing moral behavior and at indirectly cultivating virtue over time, and also a virtue that consists of facility with and expertise in these situational manipulations. Appealing to the particular example of social power, I then argue that one is justified in attempting to acquire virtue if one knows that one will frequently encounter circumstances in which purely situationist strategies lose effectiveness, if these circumstances also carry moral urgency: the risk of great harm or opportunity for great benefit to others is high, and if utilizing the potent combination of situationist strategies and virtue envisioned by the early Confucians as ritual is possible. (shrink)
The ability to understand both the self and others as purposeful agents — with thoughts, beliefs, and desires — seems to be central to the emergence of cultural processes both phylo- and ontogenetically. This ability has been termed second-order intentionality or “theory of mind” and has been conceptualized as a species-specific “trait” which is genetically predetermined, naturally selected and the resident of a dedicated module within the mind. Alternatively, we see it emerging out of a more general process — symbolization. (...) The paper discusses the emergence of the symbolic function from previously existing forms of communication by analyzing the structures and functions of different kinds of signs used in human and non-human vocal communication. We reinterpret evidence from the study of non-human primate vocalizations and suggest that these vocalizations embody a semiotic type that, like all signs, is more highly developed than a signal, but is not catalogued within the basic Peircean triad of sign types . This form, the double indexical, is intermediary between indexes and symbols. We speculate on what structural and functional reorganization is required to establish a developmental continuity from signals through the various types of signs to the well-known structure of the symbol — and possibly beyond. (shrink)