This book gives a comprehensive overview of central themes of finite model theory â expressive power, descriptive complexity, and zero-one laws â together with selected applications relating to database theory and artificial intelligence, especially constraint databases and constraint satisfaction problems. The final chapter provides a concise modern introduction to modal logic, emphasizing the continuity in spirit and technique with finite model theory. This underlying spirit involves the use of various fragments of and hierarchies within first-order, second-order, fixed-point, and infinitary logics (...) to gain insight into phenomena in complexity theory and combinatorics. The book emphasizes the use of combinatorial games, such as extensions and refinements of the Ehrenfeucht-Fraissé pebble game, as a powerful way to analyze the expressive power of such logics, and illustrates how deep notions from model theory and combinatorics, such as o-minimality and treewidth, arise naturally in the application of finite model theory to database theory and AI. Students of logic and computer science will find here the tools necessary to embark on research into finite model theory, and all readers will experience the excitement of a vibrant area of the application of logic to computer science. (shrink)
George Spencer Brown, a polymath and author of Laws of Form, brought together mathematics, electronics, engineering and philosophy to form an unlikely bond. This book investigates Design with the NOR, the title of the yet unpublished 1961 typescript by Spencer Brown. The typescript formed through the author's experiences as technical engineer and developer of a new form of switching algebra for Mullard Equipment LTD., a British manufacturer of electronic components. Related essays contextualise the typescript drawing on a variety (...) of backgrounds from mathematics and engineering to philosophy and sociology. (shrink)
The ideas upon which public education was founded in the last half of the nineteenth century were wrong. And despite their continued dominance in educational thinking for a century and a half, these ideas are no more right today. So argues one of the most original and highly regarded educational theorists of our time in 'Getting It Wrong from the Beginning'. Kieran Egan explains how we have come to take mistaken concepts about education for granted and why this dooms our (...) attempts at educational reform. (shrink)
: A virtually unknown philosopher of the twentieth century, Spencer Heath was nevertheless well-known as a pioneer in the early development of commercial aviation. He retired from business in 1931 to devote the last thirty years of his life to his long-time interest in the philosophy of science and human social organization. He developed ….
Herbert Spencer was regarded by the Victorians as the foremost philosopher of the age, the prophet of evolution at a time when the idea had gripped the popular imagination. Until recently Spencer's posthumous reputation rested almost excusively on his social and political thought, which has itself frequently been subject to serious misrepresentation. But historians of ideas now recognise that an acquaintance with Spencer's thought is essential for the proper understanding of many aspects of Victorian intellectual life, and (...) the present selection is designed to answer this need. It provides a cross-section of Spencer's works from his more popular and approachable essays to a number of the volumes of the Synthetic Philosophy itself. (shrink)
Excerpt from Passages From the Philosophy of Herbert Spencer Perhaps to the average reader these lines from T be Foundations of Belief, by Arthur James Bal four, would seem to characterize the doctrine of Herbert Spencer. But the real student of his Philosophy Would resent the injustice of such an in terpretation. As though from a glance at a figure upon the border of an intricate piece Of tapestry, one could conceive the design and colour scheme of the (...) whole. Herbert Spencer could not avoid the conviction that there exists no rational foundation for the be lief in the continuance of conscious personality after death. He believed that the human intellect in its present state of development, could offer no solution to the great problem of identity. He neither af firmed nor denied but with unremitting labour and his life's devotion he produced a Philosophy which gave an inestimable impulse to modern thought if not to Science. In his Syntlzetic Pbilosopliy he revealed the mysterious unity of all existence he traced the progress of Evolution in life, mind, society and morality. About the Publisher Forgotten Books publishes hundreds of thousands of rare and classic books. Find more at www.forgottenbooks.com This book is a reproduction of an important historical work. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art technology to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. In rare cases, an imperfection in the original, such as a blemish or missing page, may be replicated in our edition. We do, however, repair the vast majority of imperfections successfully; any imperfections that remain are intentionally left to preserve the state of such historical works. (shrink)
In 1862, the British philosopher Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) published this preamble to a planned series of publications on biology, psychology, sociology and morality. In it, he states that religion and science can be reconciled by their shared belief in an Absolute, and that ultimate principles can be discerned in all manifestations of the Absolute, particularly the general laws of nature being discovered by science. Spencer divides his text into two parts. Part I, 'The Unknowable', discusses early philosophical ideas (...) that human knowledge is limited and cannot meaningfully conceive of God; faith must be the bridge between human experience and ultimate truth. Spencer refutes this as he examines religion and science in detail. In Part II, 'Laws of the Knowable', Spencer argues that religion and science can be reconciled in the underlying unity from which the visible complexity of the universe has evolved. (shrink)
This work has been selected by scholars as being culturally important, and is part of the knowledge base of civilization as we know it. This work was reproduced from the original artifact, and remains as true to the original work as possible. Therefore, you will see the original copyright references, library stamps (as most of these works have been housed in our most important libraries around the world), and other notations in the work. This work is in the public domain (...) in the United States of America, and possibly other nations. Within the United States, you may freely copy and distribute this work, as no entity (individual or corporate) has a copyright on the body of the work. As a reproduction of a historical artifact, this work may contain missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant marks, etc. Scholars believe, and we concur, that this work is important enough to be preserved, reproduced, and made generally available to the public. We appreciate your support of the preservation process, and thank you for being an important part of keeping this knowledge alive and relevant. (shrink)
Philosophers and psychologists often assume that mirror reflections are optical illusions. According to many authors, what we see in a mirror appears to be behind it. I discuss two strategies to resist this piece of dogma. As I will show, the conviction that mirror reflections are illusions is rooted in a confused conception of the relations between location, direction, and visibility. This conception is unacceptable to those who take seriously the way in which mirrors contribute to our experience of the (...) world. My argument may be read as an advertisement of the neglected field of philosophical catoptrics, the philosophical study of the optical properties of mirrors. It enables us to recast familiar issues in the philosophy of perception. (shrink)
Relationalism maintains that perceptual experience involves, as part of its nature, a distinctive kind of conscious perceptual relation between a subject of experience and an object of experience. Together with the claim that perceptual experience is presentational, relationalism is widely believed to be a core aspect of the naive realist outlook on perception. This is a mistake. I argue that naive realism about perception can be upheld without a commitment to relationalism.
What sets the practice of rigorously tested, sound science apart from pseudoscience? In this volume, the contributors seek to answer this question, known to philosophers of science as “the demarcation problem.” This issue has a long history in philosophy, stretching as far back as the early twentieth century and the work of Karl Popper. But by the late 1980s, scholars in the field began to treat the demarcation problem as impossible to solve and futile to ponder. However, the essays that (...) Massimo Pigliucci and Maarten Boudry have assembled in this volume make a rousing case for the unequivocal importance of reflecting on the separation between pseudoscience and sound science. (shrink)
Undergraduate geoscience students are rarely exposed to history and philosophy of science. I will describe the experiences with a short course unfavourably placed in the first year of a bachelor of earth science. Arguments how HPS could enrich their education in many ways are sketched. One useful didactic approach is to develop a broader interest by connecting HPS themes to practical cases throughout the curriculum, and develop learning activities that allow students to reflect on their skills, methods and their field (...) in relation to other disciplines and interactions with society with abilities gained through exposure to HPS. Given support of the teaching staff, the tenets of philosophy of science in practice, of conceptual history of knowledge, and of ethics of science for society can fruitfully and directly be connected to the existing curriculum. This is ideally followed by a capstone HPS course late in the bachelor programme. (shrink)
The present paper presents a philosophical analysis of earth science, a discipline that has received relatively little attention from philosophers of science. We focus on the question of whether earth science can be reduced to allegedly more fundamental sciences, such as chemistry or physics. In order to answer this question, we investigate the aims and methods of earth science, the laws and theories used by earth scientists, and the nature of earth-scientific explanation. Our analysis leads to the tentative conclusion that (...) there are emergent phenomena in earth science but that these may be reducible to physics. However, earth science does not have irreducible laws, and the theories of earth science are typically hypotheses about unobservable (past) events or generalised - but not universally valid - descriptions of contingent processes. Unlike more fundamental sciences, earth science is characterised by explanatory pluralism: earth scientists employ various forms of narrative explanations in combination with causal explanations. The main reason is that earth-scientific explanations are typically hampered by local underdetermination by the data to such an extent that complete causal explanations are impossible in practice, if not in principle. (shrink)
We consider some modal languages with a modal operator D whose semantics is based on the relation of inequality. Basic logical properties such as definability, expressive power and completeness are studied. Also, some connections with a number of other recent proposals to extend the standard modal language are pointed at.
For an arbitrary similarity type of Boolean Algebras with Operators we define a class of Sahlqvist identities. Sahlqvist identities have two important properties. First, a Sahlqvist identity is valid in a complex algebra if and only if the underlying relational atom structure satisfies a first-order condition which can be effectively read off from the syntactic form of the identity. Second, and as a consequence of the first property, Sahlqvist identities are canonical, that is, their validity is preserved under taking canonical (...) embedding algebras. Taken together, these properties imply that results about a Sahlqvist variety V van be obtained by reasoning in the elementary class of canonical structures of algebras in V. We give an example of this strategy in the variety of Cylindric Algebras: we show that an important identity called Henkin's equation is equivalent to a simpler identity that uses only one variable. We give a conceptually simple proof by showing that the firstorder correspondents of these two equations are equivalent over the class of cylindric atom structures. (shrink)
The concept of the future is re-emerging as an urgent topic on the academic agenda. In this article, we focus on the ‘politics of the future’: the social processes and practices that allow particular imagined futures to become socially performative. Acknowledging that the performativity of such imagined futures is well-understood, we argue that how particular visions come about and why they become performative is underexplained. Drawing on constructivist sociological theory, this article aims to fill this gap by exploring the question (...) ‘how do imagined futures become socially performative’? In doing so, the article has three aims to identify the leading social–theoretical work on the future; conceptualize the relationship of the imagination of the future with social practices and the performance of reality; provide a theoretical framework explaining how images of the future become performative, using the concepts ‘techniques of futuring’ and ‘dramaturgical regime’. (shrink)
People can come to seem to us more beautiful the better we get to know their personalities. Some have taken this to show there is a moral kind of beauty. According to the moral beauty view, moral personality traits realise moral beauty in people. Here I present a problem for the standard articulation of the moral beauty view, namely that it is not a logical truth that people inherit the beauty of their virtues. I call this the ‘inheritance problem’. I (...) present an alternative articulation of the moral beauty view that does not give rise to the problem. On this alternative articulation, the moral beauty view is not as revisionary as it is standardly taken to be. (shrink)
John Hyman insists that Frege-style cases for depiction show that any sound theory of depiction must distinguish between the ‘sense’ and the ‘reference’ of a picture. I argue that this rests on a mistake. Making sense of the cases does not require the distinction.
Herbert Spencer remains a significant but poorly understood figure in 19th century intellectual life. His ideas on evolution ranged across the natural sciences and philosophy, and he pioneered new ideas in psychology and sociology. This book comprehensively examines his work and strips away common misconceptions about his sociology" --Provided by publisher.
Peirce algebras combine sets, relations and various operations linking the two in a unifying setting. This paper offers a modal perspective on Peirce algebras. Using modal logic as a characterization of the full Peirce algebras is given, as well as a finite axiomatization of their equational theory that uses so-called unorthodox derivation rules. In addition, the expressive power of Peirce algebras is analyzed through their connection with first-order logic and the fragment of first-order logic corresponding to Peirce algebras is described (...) in terms of bisimulations. (shrink)
Society, based on contract and voluntary exchange, is evolving, but remains only partly developed. Goods and services that meet the needs of individuals, such as food, clothing, and shelter, are amply produced and distributed through the market process. However, those that meet common or community needs, while distributed through the market, are produced politically through taxation and violence. These goods attach not to individuals but to a place; to enjoy them, individuals must go to the place where they are. Land (...) owners, all unknowingly, distribute such services contractually as they rent or sell sites. Rent or price is the market value of such services, net after disservices, as they affect each site. By distributing occupancies to those who can pay the highest price, land owners’ interests align with those of society. Without this, tenure would be precarious—by force or favor of politicians. The 18th-century separation of land from state, so little studied by historians, permitted the development of modern property in land. This change is perhaps “the greatest single step in the evolution of Society the world has ever seen.” When land owners realize that they market community services, they will organize to produce and administer them as well, and society will be made whole. (shrink)