Koichiro Matsuno (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Mon, 6 Dec 1999 15:12:59 +0900
Dear Stephen and All:
At 0:31 on 5 Dec 1999, Stephen Paul King <email@example.com>
>> Representation is the beginning and the end of all we can do, but
>> is only part of the whole story. If one tries to ground the fundamental
>> property of material bodies upon the capacity of making distinctions in
>> progress at least phenomenologically, representation must necessarily be
>> situated within the triad of experiencing, transforming and representing.
> There is something about this triad that is bugging me, like an idea
>that one has "on the tip of the tongue"... It is as if any one of them
>is given by interactions between the opposite pair, umm, something is
>missing... For instance, does an interaction between experiencing and
>representing give us transformation? How could we put this in words? All
Although I am not sure whether I took you right, the point I made in the
above is that to say the least, interaction is an organizing principle
guaranteeing coexistence of many things at the same time (a la Immanuel
Kant). This organizing principle should be legitimate if I sit on the
shoulder of the giant. On the other hand, if the giant sits on my shoulder,
I could see only near my step and the principle would almost be of no use to
me. In short, interaction cannot be a reliable analytical tool if the
spatiotemporal horizons on the part of the participating material bodies
remain finite. My choice for the purpose is the trio of experiencing,
transforming and representing. Rather, we may be able to analyze interaction
as appealing to the three because none of the three assumes an infinite
horizon from the start.
>> Put another way, Aristotle is quite right in distinguishing between
>> "is walking" and "have walked". Although I can say I am walking towards
>> the souvenir shop in the airport, it is also undeniable that my walking
>> in the crowded airport concourse has been actualized in order to
>> constantly avoid the approaching danger of collisions with the others.
> Umm, we could also think of the souvenir shop as moving toward you and
>undergoing the same collision avoidance process with the pedestrians.
>This notion of collision avoidance entails to me the idea of logical
>precedence and that causality is computational in nature.
If the participant has an infinite horizon, the final causation must be
computational. It can be equated even to an efficient causation, because
computation is a non-empirical operation as a matter of principle. In
contrast, if the participant has only a finite horizon, something coming
from over the horizon must be a surprise in the empirical sense whether it
may be a human being or a molecule.
>> At issue is how to appreciate the
>> difference between the present progressive and the present perfect tense.
>> In other words, it must be an imperative to note that the present perfect
>> tense is a linguistic artifact in the legitimate sense of the word. This
>> may become clearer if we consider the contrast between "is walking" and
>> "have walked so far". A similar line of argument may apply to "clocking".
>> Ameliorating the linguistic artifact necessarily resting upon the present
>> perfect (e.g., as in the difference, if any, between "have walked" and "
>> have walked so far") must be the prime mover of clocking. It may be
>> intentional, but not in the transcendental sense of Husserl.
> Yes, it is an artifact, but it could be that it has a purpose that need
>to be considered. It reminds me of the way that our awareness is always
>"after the fact", since it takes time for the signals to travel to the
>brain, etc. Roger Penrose has discussed this in his wonderful book The
>Emperor's New Mind. Pratt said "cognito, ergo eram" -I think, therefore
I> was". Umm, this backs up your thought that the present prefect is a
>"frozen" occurrence. It is only in retrospective that we "project" a
>present state of being.
What may look like a purpose is an a posteriori consequence of the
artifact. When we say atoms and molecules in the empirical arena are
agential, we are responsible for saying this statement. An inevitable
disconformity between the present progressive and the present perfect
applied to them could only be mitigated as appealing to the agential
capacity on their part. If we do not have the distinction between the two
grammatical tenses, I am not sure whether we could properly refer to the
agential capacity of the material in general or the organisms in the
biological realm in particular.
> Umm, I wonder if these artifacts are truly such, I have always
>considered Kant as having proven that certain qualia were necessary
>(http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~philos/MindDict/qualia.html). He called
>them Categories, if I remember correctly... Space and Time very included
>in these... So I ask, is it really necessary to assume that space and
>time "exist" externally to the observer, e.g. space-time substantivalism
>I am not so sure, the only alternative seems to be some type of
>multi-mind solipsism! I would be happy to find an alternative thought
Space and time to Kant are the container of things. The container can
remain as it is even if nothing is contained in it. However, we cannot
eliminate the container altogether. Thus, space and time cannot be an
abstraction from some other things. They must be special, that is, a
universal singularis instead of a general universal. This has been in
essence what Kant said. This kind of reasoning could quite easily be
recruited to vindicate Newtonian space and time and its followers. Husserl
said nay to this scheme.
> The idea of "passing a hot potato" makes me smile! :-) I see it as a
>sequential optimization, a minimum of "passers" get burns while the
>potato does not drop to the floor while traveling as far as possible! I
>have a caution though, I think that we need to be careful what
>ontological status we give to the "order" in which the "passers" handed
>off the potato, when we think within the metaphor. :-) Is is really
>given a priori or is it a "situation" (I need a better word!) were each
>passer makes a choice only at the instant that the potato is passed to
>her? The "throwness" or "kickability" of the potato is only such at the
>instant that is touches the hand...
One big issue in this regard must be an ontological commitment. When we
say anything, we have to do this commitment even unwittingly. It seems to me
that I am currently making pretty firm commitment to migrating
inconsistencies. Once such a commitment is done for the time being, the next
inevitable issue will be to make it subject to epistemological analysis. The
latter is however up to the choice of analytical tools for the purpose.
>> That is the internalist perspective, exhibiting a distinct contrast
>> to the G-N externalist one. The internalist perspective does not say
>> anything great or big in the beginning. It's bottom-up like Husserl's
>> Phenomenological Reduction. The internalist perspective grounded upon
>> finite horizons is intentional in precipitating the present perfect
>> tense on a global scale, which is an artifact but an inevitable one.
> I agree. I would go as far as saying that the directedness of
>intesionality is such because it "is" the act of defining, of giving
>meaning; and such occur only within finite "bracketings", or as I say
>"framings" of objects. So there is, in the were act of interaction, a
>definition of a particular space and time categorization of such, and
>such only can have meaning or directedness within the context of a
Intensiveness or intensionality must be a form of intentionality
de-transcended. A representation of an intensity could be retrieved from the
record registered in the present perfect tense.
> So, I believe that we need a logical formalism that gives us a way of
>relating these two perspectives! What if, in some way, they were
>complements of each other? On one hand, we have a Universe forever at
>equilibrium with any proper subset of itself and thus having as subsets
>Minkowskian hypersurfaces that are in constant uniform motion with
>respect to each other. On another hand, we have a multitude of finite
>framings, that somehow, when we allow for comparison between them, are
>not in uniform motion with each other!
>Then the question becomes: What is the mechanism of this act of
>comparison, using the term mechanism loosely?
It must be an ontological issue. Comparison requires an epistemology, but
making commitments, if failed, must pay the price by itself. Of course, I do
know the standard practice of empirical sciences tries hard to avoid making
such commitments as much as possible.
>> The record is an artifact. The record cannot keep in itself the
>> very activity of precipitating the following record. But we cannot live
>> without it.
> So, could we think of records as being "dissipative structures"
>(http://pespmc1.vub.ac.be/ASC/Dissip_struc.html)that depends of the vary
>process of migrating inconsistencies? The term "autopoiesis" also seems
Some of the records must be dissipative structures. One may retrieve
completed movement from the record, but no one can tell whether or not the
movement in the record has been completed in reality. So far, I have failed
in seeing whether autopoiesis distinguishes between the present progressive
and the present perfect.
>> In short, mechanics must perfectly be legitimate if the intensity
>> specifying the initial condition is fixed. However, the reverse is not
>> true. The intensity is beyond mechanics. Although it can tell how the
>> celestial bodies would move, Newton's mechanics does not tell us what
>> celestial bodies would be available there in the first place. Likewise,
>> many seismologists seem to agree that precise prediction of the future
>> earthquakes would be hard to be attained. The fault is of course not
>> upon Newton's mechanics, but upon our inability to be acquainted with the
>> intensity driving the mechanics. The notion of distortions (of the earth
>> plates) remains quite uncomfortable within mechanics. One of the
>> especially of our contemporary time is to let intensities be subordinate
>> to mechanics.
> Umm, I am still struggling with the concept of intensities! :-( Does it
>have any relation to intesionality?
> I found these on the net while looking for examples of intensities...
You are right. Intensity is a means of implementing an intensionality.
Accordingly, intensity cannot be extensive because of its intrinsic affinity
and relatedness to the whole in a bottom-up manner. French postmodernists
were extremely keen to this notion and actually rediscovered the medieval
philosopher Duns Scotus.
> I take the statement of yours " Although it can tell how the celestial
>bodies would move, Newton's mechanics does not tell us what celestial
>bodies would be available there in the first place." to imply that
>intesities relate to the a priori possibilities from which observations
>are selected, but I am not sure...
Extensive quantities alone cannot do anything by themselves. If these
extensive quantities are uniquely supplemented by their intensities, the
physics we know of it today can work remarkably well. Field theory is a
superb example. A difficulty may arise, however, if the unique association
of extensive quantities with their intensities comes to be questioned.
>> Of course, things in the present perfect mode are always conceived of
>> in a top-down manner.
> I am not sure why this is... but I do agree with it. Perhaps it is due
>to the way that postulated Ideals (at the top) are used to justify the
>properties of the particular concretes.
If you are talking about an epistemology, you will certainly be right.
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