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Posts posted by merjet

  1. 5 hours ago, Grames said:

    When you omit the measurements a quantitative measurement becomes qualitative.  That is what a quality is: a certain range of measurements.  The quality of red means (refers to) any of the various shades and intensities of color within the range of red, and it does so open-endedly (all reds near, far, past, future, known, unknown). 

    1. Consider different contents of books. Some books are fiction and others are non-fiction. Types of fiction are mystery, romance, children’s stories, etc. Types of nonfiction are history, science, mathematics, music, food recipes, etc. These various contents are congruous but not commensurable. The differences between them that need to be omitted to form the concept book are qualitative, not measurable.

    2. Consider different kinds of boats. There are rowboats, some with an outboard motor, some are steamboats, some have an inboard diesel engine, some have paddle wheels, some airboats/fanboats, and so forth. The different kinds of locomotive power are qualitative differences.  That some aspect of the different kinds, e.g. horsepower, is measurable does not overturn the fact the some differences between the kinds are only qualitative.

    3. A child capable of identifying different colors is not measuring anything. People who lived before it was known that colors reflect different light wave lengths/frequencies were not measuring anything. Also, a wave length is a length, not a color. 


  2. 39 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

    For me, if I merely know how to classify a thing, I don't feel like I understand it. But if I can see its structure and the structures it forms in relation to other things and how that structure might be changed and so on, only then do I feel like I truly understand it, and only then can one come up with truly non-arbitrary classification schemes.

    This suggests a metaphor. Classifying pertains to the skeleton. A fuller understanding adds flesh.

    39 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

    Even the concept of "concept" (the one that Rand describes) I currently understand primarily in terms of space. For instance, when thinking about the relationship of dogs to all other animals, I see a big circle in my mind labeled "animals", and within that circle, a smaller circle labeled "mammals", and within that circle, a smaller circle labeled "dogs".

    So I think that all of the concepts in my mind are spatial ones. Therefore, I strongly suspect that the process of concept formation is some kind of operation on spaces.

    Your use of circles suggests Venn diagrams, which are depicted spatially. My essay '"The Sim-Dif Model and Comparison" cited above uses Venn diagrams extensively.

    39 minutes ago, SpookyKitty said:

    I've been studying category theory, and I think the idea of adjunctions may hold the key to concept formaiton. By using adjunctions, one can "mechanically" derive significant mathematical concepts from totally trivial ones.


  3. 3 hours ago, [email protected] said:

    Then after that you're ready to form the concept force, which is on a level that is higher from "push" and "pull."  That's my understanding.

    You didn't say explicitly that learning higher level concepts must come after learning lower level ones. Regardless, learning higher level concepts may precede learning lower level ones. For example, we probably all learned the concept car before we had the concepts Ford, Chevy, Toyota, sedan, convertible, etc. 

  4. 2 hours ago, [email protected] said:

    It seems like you're stealing the higher-level concept to form the lower level one...

    And by the way, since you mentioned color, can you tell me what existent did you differentiate red, blue, and green FROM to form the concept "color?"

    That was decades ago, so I don't remember very clearly. When my parents or somebody else helped me learn red, blue, green, and so on, somehow or another I reckoned those words didn't refer to a thing, shape, motion, sound, etc. They probably also often used the word "color" along with "red", "blue", "green" and so on. Eventually I learned that "color" named the category to which red, blue, green, and so forth belonged. If that was stealing from my parents or somebody else, then I must plead guilty.  🙂 

    The first paragraph of my earlier post was an attempt to describe the essence of the process, not the whole story and context.

  5. To form the concept X, you need instances of the category -- call them x's -- and contrasts -- call them non-x's. To limit the number and variety of non-x's, both the x's and non-x's should satisfy a more abstract, wider, less specific, category. For example, to form the concept red instances of red are differentiated from instances of blue, green, etc. However, all the instances -- red, blue, green, etc. -- are instances of the wider concept color.

    I suggest "The Sim-Dif Model and Comparison" in The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies, Vol. 11, No. 2 (December 2011), pp. 215-232. The entire essay can be read on jstor.org with a free membership.




  6. Why You Shouldn’t Be A Socialist #3

    I tried to put a book review of Why You Should Be a Socialist on Amazon and met a barrier that was new to me.  

    "We apologize but this account has not met the minimum eligibility requirements to write a review. If you would like to learn more about our eligibility requirements, please see our community guidelines." The guidelines say to post a review you must have spent at least $50 on Amazon.com in the past 12 months. I did spend more than $50 in the past 12 months. However, part was with a gift card, and my net spent was less than $50. 🙂

  7. The author of the op-ed, Garry Galles, wrote, "The main problem with understanding Ayn Rand’s position on this today is that modern usage of the term has eroded his meaning of altruism to little more than a synonym for generosity, so Rand’s rejection of the original meaning — the requirement of total selflessness — is erroneously taken as rejecting generosity.

    Portraying the modern usage as "little more than a synonym for generosity" is a stretch. A parent, human or another animal, caring for its young is often not mere "generosity."

  8. The following are not trying to answer your question, but:

    Object-Oriented Programming and Objectivist Epistemology: Parallels and Implications

    From here:

    "Most importantly, Booch's Object-Oriented Analysis and Design with Applications, which some people consider "seminal" in the field, explicitly refers to Rand as a contemporary "object-oriented" philosopher, and includes Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology in the bibliography.

    I have no information as to how big of a role ITOE played in the development of Object Oriented, but having read the book, I would not at all be surprised if it played a rather large part. It essentially describes the mechanics of human concept-formation and how they reflect the real relationship between entities, attributes, and measurement. It lends itself very naturally to a computer-science approach.

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