Sunday, July 27, 2008

74th Philosophers' Carnival

......Most people would find the following obscure and boring. Fortunately most people won't be reading it :-) so, for all you philosophers out there, here it is (a day early):-
......Philosophers' Carnival

......Language

a) David asks Does Truth Exist? and simply shows its necessary existence, as Mr. Contrarian.

b) Peter presents Parsons's Mathematical Thought: Sec 13, Nominalism and second-order logic, part of an interesting (if one likes mathematics) review of Charles Parsons's 2008 "Mathematical Thought and Its Objects" at Logic Matters.

c) Justin presents Experimental Work on Machery et al.'s "Semantics, Cross-cultural Style" , which undermines the conclusions of that previous investigation into the intuitions behind Kripke's Gödel case (from "Naming and Necessity"), at My Mind is Made Up.

d) Gualtiero, in Ramsey Reconsiders Representation, reviews William Ramsey's 2007 "Representation Reconsidered" at Brains.

e) Richard's Open Access Action is a petition (nominated by Terrance) to open-up a Journal (Philosophical Studies), posted at Philosophy, et cetera.

......Knowledge

(i) Ryan's Quantum Immortality shows us accessibly why Everett's interpretation of physics is hopeless. If you love that, you'll like chaospet.

(ii) Ed describes how Social spiders do better when hunting with relatives, which was posted at the accessible and interesting Not Exactly Rocket Science.

(iii) Manoj presents
Perception, Physics and the Role of Light in Philosophy, the blog version of an article published in "The Philosopher," and now at Unreal Blog.

(iv) Noumena's
Reconceptualizing Underrepresentation (nominated by Rachel) responds thoughtfully to Tierney's infamous article of July 15 NYT (on Title IX and Science), and is at The Headpiece for the Staff of Ra.

(v) Phillip presents some Problems with Transhumanism, e.g.
"that technologies are, as a rule, more problem-engendering than problem-solving." More such equals The Coriolis Effect.

......The Will

1. Alrenous presents Concept Cagematch: Zombies vs Consciousness. Maybe we act on such nonphysical information as would be unavailable to Zombies, but this post concentrates accessibly on what consciousness is not. Posted at Accepting Ignorance.

2. Avery presents Why-Questions and Motive-Explanations, being a start on a theory of action: "an action counts as intentional if and only if it possible to give a correct belief-desire or motive-explanation of that action." Posted at The Space of Reasons.

3. Jared contrasts Reasons vs. Conditions, in what is perhaps about how reasonable reasons can transcend reason, but which may certainly be found at Sportive Thoughts.

4. Larry (aka larryniven) presents Wordplay, discovering equivocation in one of Dennett's arguments against the incompatibility of free will and determinism. Posted (a while ago) at Rust Belt Philosophy.

5. Michael presents
Homosexuality, Choice and Dreaded Dark Overlords, being a short look at free will from the perspective of sexual orientation, posted at a Nadder!

......The Good

p = Matt presents Ethics of Manners. He argues that "the practice of good manners is unethical." Posted at A Mind for Madness.

q = Thom asks Should we elect all members of the House of Lords? They "can have the long-term interests of the country in mind, rather than newspaper headlines or general elections" so no, argues The Brooks Blog.

r = David presents "We study ethics to become good" Is this true anywhere today? But when would the good choose the freedom to be good, over their democratic responsibilities? The former (for USA) is preferred by The Picket Line.

s = Paul presents some Moral Commitment Problems, in which game theory seems to favour Kantian ethics, and which was posted at Uncommon Priors.

t = Ashok presents Towards a Nietzschean Understanding of Politics: Notes on "The Case of Wagner" (Part 1) "Socrates laughs, Jesus weeps." Posted at Rethink.

......And that's that...
......The 75th Carnival will follow in a fortnight at Wide Scope so if you are unimpressed with the above (or even if not)
you should submit something to that. And why not host one yourself? That way you can have everything how you like it (-:

6 comments:

ashok said...

Just wanted to thank you for hosting this carnival! For us readers it's quite an impressive collection of links, but it must have been quite a lot of work for you to go through these and more to find the ones worth presenting and blurb them.

Thank you again.

Alrenous said...

Incidentally, can I ask what method you used to find the ones worth presenting?

I mostly second ashok.

Rachel McKinney said...

Just a quick note that I did not write the post over at Headpiece of the Staff of Ra on Reconceptualizing Underrepresentation, but merely nominated it. It was written by Noumena/Dan Hicks.

Enigman said...

Thanks ashok, but it wasn't much work. The submissions come with a cut-and-paste sentence containing the two links, and often with a specified category, and submitters remarks that can be cut-and-pasted into that aforementioned sentence.

If anything, the last fortnight was more interesting than usual, as I visited blogs I don't usually look at, although I submitted (i) and (ii) myself. I skim-read the other entries (on average 2 a day) and just included any that would probably interest someone interested in analytic philosophy. If they interested me I read them all the way through.

Alrenous, I meant to ask you what you meant by "nonphysical information." And thanks Rachel, I've changed that now (and made other little stylistic changes, as is my wont). I'm not sure whether the "presents" in the cut-and-paste sentence refers to who nominates/submits or who writes the post. It sounds like the former, and the submission form asks for the submitter's name, but it seems natural to read the sentence as though it was the latter.

Alrenous said...

See, you say it's not much work but you do in fact read the articles. Reading serious philosophy is serious work, especially outside your specialities.

Nonphysical information. That is, if I've successfully proven that consciousness isn't physical, then consciousness is a different kind of stuff than physics. (I call it spiffy stuff, as opposed to nifty stuff; energy.)

Spiffy stuff will have different interactions and relationships than nifty stuff, which means you will be able to do different kinds of computations with it, and some of these computations will solve problems that are physically uncomputable, for example potentially NP-complete problems in a short amount of time.

Also, consciousness seems to be something of a mass object. It gloms onto itself when it can. Psychics cannot work physically, but direct mind-to-mind contact may be provisionally or marginally possible using spiffy stuff.

Enigman said...

Hmm... is that like quantum logic, then? I'd've thought that information was relative to a subjective interpretation, rather than to the objective nature of its carrier, but I've not really thought about it very deeply (and there are probably lots of definitions of 'information').

I think that psychics can work physically, though. Minds act on brains, and micro-PK on chemical bonds is one possibility. So maybe an explanation of telepathy could go via the sense of being stared at (e.g. two external micro-PKers affecting the same system might exchange information).