I enjoyed the "Truth and Meaning" paper by Soames you referenced. I
was interested to see how philosophers are trying to deal with the
failure of analycity typified by Quine etc. (02)
But basing "meaning" in "truth" seems cart about horse. I thought it
was absolute values for "truth" which were most in question. (03)
Are you familiar with the approach taken by Jeurgen Schmidhuber and
Marcus Hutter? Schmidhuber resolves incompleteness issues by equating
"intelligence" with prediction. Marcus Hutter equates it with
Or course Schmidhuber and Hutter talk principally about "intelligence"
not "meaning", but what is interesting is that by basing
"intelligence" in prediction/compression, they manage to avoid the
pitfalls of formal logic. (07)
On Mon, Sep 15, 2008 at 9:14 AM, Rick Murphy <rick@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> Many thanks, John. See below ...
> John F. Sowa wrote:
>> About 800 years ago, the scholastics divided the "language arts"
>> in three parts: Grammar, logic, and rhetoric. Peirce elaborated
>> that subdivision with further explanation, and he made the point
>> that the role of logic is to determine "the formal conditions
>> of the truth of propositions." That is essentially the scope of
>> a Tarski-style model theory.
> Ok, understood.
>> In the 1930s, partly under the influence of Peirce and partly
>> under the influence of the behaviorists, Charles Morris renamed
>> the three traditional subdivisions syntax, semantics, and pragmatics.
> Just so I understand Marris's use of the term pragmatics, how, if at
> all, did Morris precisely differentiate Peirce's dynamical object from
> Peirce's definition of pragmaticism in his classification ?
>> The analytic philosophers picked up those terms, interpreted the
>> middle term along the lines of Tarski's model theory, and didn't
>> have a clear idea of what to do about pragmatics.
> I see. This speaks volumes about how one might classify semantics,
> semiotics and pragmaticism. And here by pragmaticism I mean the
> practical bearing of an individual's conception of an object, where
> practical bearing implies convergence on meaning through exchange or
>> RM> I had previously referenced this paper ...
>> > and wondered whether anyone was interested in sharing their thoughts ?
>> My major complaint about it is that rhetoric or pragmatics is a
>> very important part of meaning. In fact, I would say it is the
>> essential goal of any utterance, and syntax and logic are just
>> means to get the pragmatics across to the intended audience.
>> I was disappointed that the author didn't focus on pragmatics.
> Same here. But I suspect Soames would have to be overly ambitious to
> develop Tarski semantics through a theory of semiotics into pragmaticism
> in one paper.
> BTW - My two favorite books this summer were Roland Barthes's
> Mythologies and Baudrillard's Simulacra and Simulation. Mythologies was
> a gem on every page and Simulacra was a chore. But, once I set aside
> Baudriallard's nihilism, his message became quite clear.
>> One could say a lot more, but I would prefer to address related
>> issues in a different way. Following are some slides I presented
>> in July. The last slide has pointers to further reading, including
>> an article by the same title:
>> Pursuing the goal of language understanding
> Thanks, I'll give this another read.
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