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Re: [ontolog-forum] The class of the planet Venus

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "doug foxvog" <doug@xxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 12 Jul 2012 16:33:02 -0400
Message-id: <df96819073913ec15d5547971ca820f6.squirrel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
On Wed, July 11, 2012 20:38, Chris Menzel wrote:
> On Wed, Jul 11, 2012 at 7:29 PM, joel luis carbonera
<joelcarbonera@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:    (01)

The various issues of identity usually ignore that identity is something
assigned to things by a sentient being.  Identity is assigned to some
collection of things and the assigner maintains the identity as a 4D
worm by having it assigned to different collections of things at different
times.    (02)

[How's this for a way to stir up trouble!]    (03)

We take collections of experiences and group them into things depending
upon perceived patterns.  Groups of patterns that remain generally stable
over time are more likely to be identified as things.  Once we find patterns
of patterns that recur, we identify them as types of things.  Once we've
identified a type of thing by a pattern of patterns, whenever some group
of patterns matches that pattern we define it as an instance of that type.    (04)

By defining something as an instance of a type, we indicate some types
of aspects of the thing we consider important and some which we do not
for the thing's identity.    (05)

For most things, a change of location is immaterial to assigned identity.
The loss or gain of atoms is also ignored.  The loss or gain of chunks
of matter of over 1% of the size of a physical thing may or may not
result in a change of identity depending upon how crucial that affected
mass is in the assigned identity criteria.  A main criteria for identity is
whether various properties that are true of unaltered thing are also
true of the altered thing.  Which properties those are depend upon
the way the thing is classified and for what purposes.    (06)

One person could identify a certain mass as a blob of Soft Clay, while
could identify it as a Piece of Art.  If person A rolls it into a ball,
the blob
continues to exist merely experiencing a change of shape, while the piece
of art ceases to exist.  If person B fires the blob before Person A acts,
the piece of art is preserved for the future, while the blob of soft clay
to exist.    (07)

Aristotle's essential vs. accidental changes are descriptions of patterns
that are used or not used in defining a pattern that is used to define a
thing.    (08)

Whether something is the same "thing" as something at another time
depends upon the purpose of the question being asked.  In most cases,
cleaning something does not change its identity, but to a fingerprint
expert, cleaning may cause a piece of evidence to cease to exist, while
a copy of a copy of a copy of a lifted fingerprint is the same thing as the
lifted fingerprint.    (09)

>> This case, seems to be related to the diachronic identity problem.
>> http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/identity-time/    (010)

> Yes, that is the temporal manifestation of (one aspect of) the problem.
> The
> modal analog is sometimes called the problem of transworld identity:
> http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/identity-transworld/    (011)

> -chris    (012)

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