I am not too bothered about the name itself. However, one reason I would
suggest for being aware of the name, if not actually using it, is that so
much work has been done in (blue-sky, impractical) philosophy in rigorously
laying out the choices - and the name 'metaphysics' (or 'metaphysical
choices') points to this work. It would be a pity if people were not aware
of it. (02)
>From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ontolog-forum-
>bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of John F. Sowa
>Sent: 16 June 2007 13:38
>Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Two ontologiesthat areinconsistent but
>I would suggest dropping the word "metaphysical" because many
>people confuse that word with blue-sky theory that has no
>CP> It seems to me that these choices are metaphysical, in the
> > sense that no amount of empirical data can decide the issue.
>There are four very strong kinds of constraints:
> 1. Language (which encodes many generations of what people
> call "common sense"): Do the categories of the ontology
> have a smooth mapping to and from the way people talk
> about the subject?
> 2. Science: Can the categories be mapped consistently to and
> from the best empirical evidence as codified in well tested
> scientific theories? (This is essentially refined common
> sense supported by instrumentation that extends and enhances
> the human senses.)
> 3. Logic: Are the categories compatible, in the sense that
> they can fit together in a consistent description of the
> subject matter of interest?
> 4. Applications: Do the categories cover all the available
> data that is relevant to the subject matter?
>Those four constraints characterize good metaphysics, and it
>takes a lot of very hard work to satisfy all four of them.
>What gives the word 'metaphysical' bad connotations is laziness
>on the part of people who write down a bunch of symbols without
>testing them in sufficient detail against all four constraints.
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