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Re: [ontolog-forum] Spatial Extent of Abstract Entities?

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: William Frank <williamf.frank@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 24 May 2013 12:25:14 -0400
Message-id: <CALuUwtA3=AOrpxsqbkA9pjkZwqp_mwf083EmdKhKmWPe=5Jdng@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

Two questions,

As an aside, Is there not also equally social agreement as to what the traffic laws **are**?  (the scope of applicability of a law seems to me to be be the same category of thing as the statement of the law, independent of domain of control, and without the statement of the scope, the law itself seems to me to be incomplete.)

More to the point, for me, what are the practical implications of limiting existential quantifiers to a particular category of the things we talk about?

In other words, how does it *help* to not let people say, 'there exists a rule, there exists a color, there exists a category of binary relations, called symetric relations?    (Or, am I mistaken, and this is all OK -- but if it IS OK, then what is not OK?). 

I believe that some people seem to think that if a computer cannot decide if a statement is true or false, then it should be disallowed, so they do not like anything but restricted kinds of first order logic, so I think I understand the nature of their view, as a practical matter, (even though I think that this view is pernicious).  But you seem to have a theory about ontological languages that I just can't see what it will do.  ( I am not sure whether you choose to identify 'individuals' based on a relationship between those things and phenominological experience or between them and physics (which do seem to me to be miles apart, even though both are hard to grasp), but however you pick out the individuals from the non-individuals, how does it make people's understanding and description of the world easier and different from what it would be otherwise?


On Fri, May 24, 2013 at 11:17 AM, Matthew West <dr.matthew.west@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Dear John,
Yes of course they are.
> MW
> > This [traffic laws] is about social construction. The rules are still
> > classes of activity, but there is a social agreement about what they
> > apply to.
> I agree.  But I also believe that habits and social agreements are real
> I'm happy to use existential quantifiers to refer to them).


Matthew West
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William Frank


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