[Top] [All Lists]

Re: [ontolog-forum] Thing and Class

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "John F. Sowa" <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 16 Sep 2008 00:15:52 -0400
Message-id: <48CF32F8.8080406@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Azamat,    (01)

I basically agree with that statement:    (02)

> I hold with you when you talk of semantic priority of Intension
> (sense, content, comprehension, context) over Extension (reference,
> denotation, denomination, volume), even though, these two basic
> parts of meaning are inversely correlated.    (03)

The only point that might be debatable is the word 'priority'.
Aristotle was the first to comment on the inverse relationship
between intension and extension.  For example,    (04)

  1. By extension, a general category such as Animal has more instances
     than a more specialized category such as Cow.    (05)

  2. But by intension, the more specialized category Cow has more
     defining properties, since every property of Animal is true of Cow,
     but there are more differentiae that distinguish Cow from Animal.    (06)

However, Aristotle also wrote many books on biological topics (which
were one of his major interests, since his father was a physician).    (07)

He observed that in logic and theoretical subjects, such as mathematics,
one starts with the general terms and uses deduction to make inferences
about more specialized terms.    (08)

But in empirical subjects, such as biology, it is important to start
by examining instances of particular plants and animals, describe them
in detail, and derive more general principles by induction from the
low-level data.    (09)

Some people erroneously claim that Aristotle was opposed to the
experimental method, but Aristotle himself described many detailed
observations and experiments in his biological writings.  One of
his most famous was a study of the development of embryos by
starting with 30 freshly-laid chicken eggs.  Then he (or his
students) would break open one egg each day and describe the embryo
in detail.    (010)

John    (011)

Message Archives: http://ontolog.cim3.net/forum/ontolog-forum/  
Subscribe/Config: http://ontolog.cim3.net/mailman/listinfo/ontolog-forum/  
Unsubscribe: mailto:ontolog-forum-leave@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Shared Files: http://ontolog.cim3.net/file/
Community Wiki: http://ontolog.cim3.net/wiki/ 
To Post: mailto:ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx    (012)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>