Thanks John, that makes a lot of sense. I tend to think of the
third order thing as being that in the context of which some
second order thing has its definition, e.g. driving is the
context in which I am a driver. I like your idea of seeing it as
a way of defining what to look for. (01)
On 26/01/2011 15:29, John F. Sowa wrote:
> On 1/26/2011 8:49 AM, Mike Bennett wrote:
>> I sometimes wonder if something more formal can be done with the
>> idea of Peircean thirdness (context) such that we can formalise
>> the relations of different kinds of what we call context, to
>> independent and relative terms. Especially as a lot of these
>> relate to temporal concepts, commitments, affordances and so on.
> First, I'd like to clarify that phrase "Peircean thirdness (context)".
> Thirdness is a very general principle that can be used to look
> for loose ends in an ontology. In its simplest form, it says
> that whenever you find two things that are related, search for
> some reason why they are related. That reason is the implicit
> Third that relates the other two.
> That third is could be a law of physics, mathematics, or some
> other branch of science. But very often, it is the result
> of some human (or other animal) habit, purpose, intention,
> perspective, goal, desire, fear, etc.
> In the case of context, you have a text whose interpretation
> depends on something called a "context". But there is no simple
> criterion for context other than "whatever is relevant to the
> meaning of the text." The word 'relevant' brings in the Third.
> Some people get very frustrated by such notions, because they
> want something that they can immediately sit down and program.
> I sympathize with them. I wish there were a simple rule of
> thumb that would automagically tell people (or a computer)
> how to determine the relevant context.
> But Peirce's rule is like the legal principle "Cui bono?"
> (For whose benefit?). It doesn't say what is missing, but
> it tells you where to start looking for clues.
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