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Re: [ontolog-forum] What is the role of an upper level ontology?

To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Cc: Ingvar.Johansson@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
From: John F Sowa <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 15 May 2013 14:02:59 -0400
Message-id: <5193CDD3.9070306@xxxxxxxxxxx>
On 5/15/2013 10:14 AM, doug foxvog wrote:
> FWIW, the workshop web page is
> http://permalink.gmane.org/gmane.science.philosophy.region.europe/4103    (01)

That's a copy of the page I cited.    (02)

In any case, I started to browse through the other publications
on Ingvar Johansson's web site, and I recommend them as a useful
resource for various issues that we have been discussing:    (03)

    http://hem.passagen.se/ijohansson/    (04)

I find his publications congenial.  My main qualification is that some
of them would benefit from Peircean semiotics.  For example, I enjoyed
his analysis of the intransitive part relations:    (05)

    http://hem.passagen.se/ijohansson/function2.PDF    (06)

> The Solution: Intransitive parthood predicates are not binary predicates
> ... Instead [they are] either a relative product of two binary relations
> ‘φ’ and ‘<’ (so that it ought to be written ‘φ/< ’) or ... an 
> ternary relation (and so ought to be written ‘Rxyz’). In both cases,
> although in different ways, there are at least three relata involved;
> not just two, as in the parthood relation of mereology.    (07)

I realize that Peirce's terminology is definitely off-putting for many
people.  But it is refreshing to find philosophers who do not shy away
from triadic relations when they are necessary.    (08)

As another example, Johansson wrote a paper that begins "Can there be
relational universals?":    (09)

    http://hem.passagen.se/ijohansson/ontology18.pdf    (010)

I'm glad that the answer is yes.  For Peirce, however, the answer
yes is fundamental to every aspect of his philosophy.  Among those
relational universals are the laws of nature.  Every physical object
is a manifestation of those laws, and any ontology that considers
objects more fundamental than laws is fundamentally flawed.    (011)

Another example is the short book "Is Ought?" about values:    (012)

    http://hem.passagen.se/ijohansson/ethics0.pdf    (013)

 From the introduction:
> Regrettably, there is no special word for the genus of which norms and
> values, as well as virtues, are species...
> To be very brief, the essence of my answers are that, yes, Oughts exist,
> and that sometimes a change of Is rationally implies a change of Ought.    (014)

Peirce would agree.  For him, the genus that includes laws as well as
norms, values, virtues, functions, and intentionality is Thirdness.
Not coincidentally, all of them require triadic relations.    (015)

John    (016)

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