Reading Quine’s “Two Dogmas”? You’re doing it all wrong, says Hilary Putnam.
A computer has apparently passed a version of the Turing Test.
Eugene Goostman seems like a typical 13-year-old Ukrainian boy — at least, that’s what a third of judges at a Turing Test competition this Saturday thought. Goostman says that he likes hamburgers and candy and that his father is a gynecologist, but it’s all a lie. This boy is a program created by compute..
Many philosophers travel for work, delivering talks or participating in conferences and the like. In deciding whether to attend another conference, or accept another invitation, one factor is whether one has traveled enough, or too much. But how much is that? While there will be a lot of personal factors involved in that assessment, let’s see if we can get a sense o..
If you could ask a long-dead philosopher any one question, who would you you pick, and what would you ask? (For our purposes here, “long-dead” will mean “died 50 years or more ago.”) Post your question in the comments. Folks are welcome to try to answer, too, as they think the philosopher asked would do so.
A recent event at Stanford raised the question of what good ethics courses do, with a particular focus on the question of whether such courses can and should make students more moral. Tamar Schapiro, Barbara Fried, and Benoit Monin (all Stanford) were the featured participants, and you can view their talks and the following discussion here. What is the job of the mo..
No, not me. Nor, alas, anyone related to me (as far as I know). But Marshall Weinberg, a University of Michigan alumnus, has donated $7.7 million to the University of Michigan for a new cognitive science institute, which will be a cooperative effort between the Departments of Philosophy, Linguistics, and Psychology. The Weinberg Institute for Cognitive Science, as i..
St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas, has received $1.5 million from an anonymous donor to endow a chair in Catholic philosophy. “The donor requested the gift be used to recruit and retain a distinguished Catholic philosopher who has a deep understanding of prominent Catholic thinkers, especially the Rev. Bernard Lonergan.” Details here.
If you can only be good at one thing, be good at lying. … Because if you’re good at lying, you’re good at everything.
Jerry Dworkin (who put together Philosophy: a Commonplace Book) shares some of his latest discoveries of “humorous quotes, epigrams, aphorisms, parodies, etc. that have some connection to philosophy” over at 3 Quarks Daily. (via Jerry Dworkin)
Kenny Easwaran, currently at the University of Southern California, has accepted an offer as associate professor with tenure at Texas A&M, starting Fall 2014. Easwaran works on formal epistemology, decision theory, and philosophy of math.
Traditionally, the liberal arts have been the privilege of an upper class. There are three big reasons for this. First, it befits the leisure time of an upper class to explore the higher goods of human life: to play Beethoven, to study botany, to read Aristotle, to go on an imagination-expanding tour of Italy. Second, because their birthright is to occupy leadership..
The American Association of Philosophy Teachers awarded their 2014 Lenssen Prize to Ann J. Cahill and Stephen Bloch-Schulman, both of Elon University, for their paper, “Argumentation Step-By-Step: Learning Critical Thinking through Deliberative Practice,” published in Teaching Philosophy 35(1) in March 2012. The Lenssen Prize is awarded to the best paper concerning ..
Platonic forms explained in an animation in the style of an old-fashioned video game. No, I don’t know why.
The female student who last year accused Colin McGinn of sexual harassment has now filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against the University of Miami. Details here.
Judge in the Stubblefield case:
“Even if you found D.J, has the ability to communicate, you can’t overturn 20 years of his being determined to be incompetent,” Teare said during the hearing to gauge D.J.’s ability to communicate. “He does not have the ability to give consent.”
Today’s Omnivore Blog features links to recent work on the treatment of animals, including pieces by philosophers Nathan Nobis (Morehouse), Daniel Hooley (Toronto), Ian Werkheiser (Michigan State), Jonathan Anomaly (UNC & Duke), William Edmundson (Georgia State), and Brian Berkey (Stanford).
What a great idea! Aesthetics for Birds has begun a series in which 100 philosophers will each discuss one work of art in 100 words.
As reported yesterday, owing to accusations of repeatedly sexually molesting a man with cerebral-palsy, Anna Stubblefield has been placed on administrative leave without pay from her position as chair of the Department of Philosophy at Rutgers-Newark (Rafaella De Rosa is the acting chair of the department; Stubblefield does not appear on the list of faculty in the d..
Anna Stubblefield, the chair of the philosophy department at Rutgers-Newark, has been placed on administrative leave while she fights criminal charges that she repeatedly sexually assaulted a man with cerebral palsy over several years. One issue is whether the man was able to effectively consent. Details here.
2014 is the 550th anniversity of the death of 15th Century German philosopher Nicholas of Cusa (aka Nicolaus Cusanus), and you are probably asking yourself what the folks at Australian public radio are doing about it. I don’t know why you are asking yourself this, as the answer is pretty obviously a radio program. Dermot Moran (University College Dublin) and others ..
1. The science of looking smarter.
2. Professors, you’ve been rated by your students, but have you been drawn?
4. Raising a moral child.
5. An Italian philosopher who had been jailed for nine years for violating a fascist-era anti-gay law prohibiting what this article calls “plagiarism” (“in Italy a concept and a crime of unduly influencing and thus ‘stealing’ a person’s personality”–anyone know anything about this?) has died.
6. The program 360documentaries on ABC Radio (Australia) has an episode on the current state of artificial intelligence, including an interview with David Chalmers and a conversation with an android version of Philip K. Dick.
7. Also in radioland, there’s an upcoming call-in program this Monday with philosophy populizer Marietta McCarty on her new book, The Philosopher’s Table: How To Start Your Philosophy Dinner Club–Monthly Conversation, Music, and Recipes.
8. Chomsky vs. Smith: Chomsky “wins“.
9. Peter Stone reviews the latest collection of G.A. Cohen’s essays, Lectures on the History of Moral and Political Philosophy. It includes a great description of Cohen’s strengths as a philosopher from Jonathan Wolff’s “G.A. Cohen: a Memoir,” the final essay in the book.
The inaugural issue of the academic journal Porn Studies is out, and it’s a big one, by which I mean it is a double issue. Not that size matters. The publisher, Taylor & Francis, has made the entire contents free to download, and after a cursory inspection I can report two things my readership probably wants to know: (1) it seems to be entirely SFW, and (2) it seems..
Mark LeBar, currently professor of philosophy at Ohio University, has accepted a senior appointment at Florida State University, beginning January 2015. Professor LeBar works in moral, social, and political philosophy, as well as ancient philosophy.
Modern Day Philosophers is a series of podcasts of comedians talking about philosophers. It is hosted by comedian Danny Lobell, and has featured a variety of conversations with comedians discussing and learning about a variety of philosophers, including Lewis Black on William James, Janeane Garofalo on Tom Regan, Bill Burr on Adam Smith, Fred Stoller on Heraclitus, ..
The Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute (GDI) recently released its 2013 list of “Global Thought Leaders” and 4 out of the top 5 are philosophers, as Peter Singer reports. How is the ranking done? “In our analysis, the importance and influence of a thinker and/or idea is measured not only by how well they come across in a particular segment or on a specific platform such ..
Massimiliano Cappuccio, an assistant professor of philosophy at United Arab Emirates University, has received a grant for over $100,000 for “examining the theory of ‘the choking effect’ – when less experienced athletes crumble under pressure – and looking for ways to overcome this.” Details here.
Ruth Chang (Rutgers) is interviewed at 3am Magazine. Apart from a good discussion of her work on incomparability, the interview also includes some thoughts from Chang on sexual harassment in philosophy. Here’s one excerpt:
It’s not that we have to blog about it or call up the victim, whomever we might believe him/her to be, but even casual remarks to colleagues in a ..
The Museum of Modern Art is hosting a series of debates on issues at the intersection of design and violence.
Too often, and naïvely, we only celebrate the positive impact that design artifacts have on the world. However, design also has a history of violence that, unless linked overtly to political and social suppression and upheaval, often goes unexplored. Humanit..