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Re: [ontolog-forum] Objectivist Context vs. Cognitive Science

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Barkmeyer, Edward J" <edward.barkmeyer@xxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 11 Apr 2014 22:02:51 +0000
Message-id: <57f859fe1315439bbd3d00b16d5ac80b@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
John,    (01)

You wrote:    (02)

> >> Any branch of science, engineering, or philosophy that addresses
> >> aspects of cognition is part of cognitive science.
> > I think most practitioners of all those trades would disagree with that.
> > 'Cognitive science' is a particular discipline. [It involves the selection 
>> integration of concepts from neuroscience (and other biophysical and
>> biochemical sciences), psychology, linguistics, and possibly philosophy,
>> in attempting to understand the workings of brains, particularly human ones.]
> First paragraph of the home page of the Cognitive Science Society:
> > The Cognitive Science Society, Inc. brings together researchers from
> > many fields who hold a common goal: understanding the nature of the
> human mind.
> > The Society promotes scientific interchange among researchers in
> > disciplines comprising the field of Cognitive Science, including
> > Artificial Intelligence, Linguistics, Anthropology, Psychology, 
>> Philosophy, and Education.
> Source: http://www.cognitivesciencesociety.org/index.html
> I believe that my summary is compatible with the CSS paragraph.    (03)

Well, I thought the CSS paragraph was consistent with what I said.  We're good 
at reading support into someone else's treatise, what a colleague of mine at GE 
used to call a 'Rohrschach text' -- you get to read your own model into it. :-)    (04)

What I said is that Cognitive Science comprises *elements of* these several 
disciplines (and I agree with the additions, certainly).  But I don't believe 
that *all* of neuroscience, anthropology, and artificial intelligence, are 
*part of* 'cognitive science', just because they contribute importantly to it.  
 It is the "part of" that I objected to.  But maybe we just have different 
mereologies in mind.    (05)

-Ed    (06)

P.S.  [With apologies for the pedagogy involved] I would argue that the use of 
'comprising' in the quoted paragraph is dubious, although the word has become 
ambiguous in English.  If X comprises Y, which is the part and which is the 
whole?  The dictionary says 'comprising' means 'including' in the first two 
meanings (which imply different mereological axioms) and 'composing' in the 
third meaning, which is exactly the inverse relationship.  I doubt that the 
Society meant that the fields of AI, Linguistics etc., *include* 'cognitive 
science', and I would argue that they didn't really mean the reverse, either.  
And OBTW, I attribute my reaction to usages like this to many years of writing 
standards and formally capturing knowledge.    (07)

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