Teleosemantics New Philosophical Essays On Infinity - Homework for you

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Teleosemantics New Philosophical Essays On Infinity

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Philosophical Games

Philosophical Games

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Workshop Teleosemantics

Teleosemantics might well be the most prominent naturalistic approach to mental content today. Its proponents attempt to explain the content of mental states – and, consequently, the conditions under which these states are true or false, correct or incorrect – in terms of biological functions.

Teleosemantics has been intensely debated over the last few decades. Recently, discussion has focused on intriguing key issues pertaining to the teleosemantic framework.

Some of these concern the general form of the teleosemantic approach – e.g. the question whether consumer-oriented or information-based versions of teleosemantics are to be preferred. Other issues arise from applying teleosemantics to various areas of research – e.g. emotion, perception and concepts.

The workshop brings together leading researchers in the field to explore the prospect of accounting for representation along teleosemantic lines in light of these key issues.


Keynote Speaker: Karen Neander (Duke University)

Frank Hofmann (Luxembourg)

Françoise Longy (Strasbourg)

Carolyn Price (Open University London)

Peter Schulte (Erlangen-Nürnberg)

Ulrich Stegmann (Aberdeen)

Markus Wild (Berlin)


Participation is free, but please register by sending an email to peter.schulte[at]


This workshop is organized by Peter Schulte and Christian Nimtz.

Determining truth conditions in signaling games

Determining truth conditions in signaling games

Cite this article as: Harms, W.F. Philos Stud (2010) 147: 23. doi:10.1007/s11098-009-9448-9


Evolving signaling systems can be said to induce partitions on the space of world states as they approach equilibrium. Formalizing this claim provides a general framework for understanding what it means for language to “cut nature at its seams”. In order to avoid taking our current best science as providing the adaptive target for all evolving systems, the state space of the world must be characterized exclusively in terms of the coincidence of stimuli and payoffs that drives the evolution of cognitive complexity. Cognition exploits the reliable clustering of events in this space. Using this framework to analyze our ordinary concepts of truth and justification, it appears that while justification can be a simple matter of conforming to historically entrenched strategies, truth cannot be fully specified on the basis of the system’s causal history, but requires a robust clustering in the larger world state space.


Signaling games Teleosemantics Evolutionary epistemology Evolution of meaning Empiricist epistemology


Barrett, J. A. (2007). Dynamic partitioning and the conventionality of kinds. Philosophy of Science,74. 527–546. CrossRef

Dretske, F. (1986). Misinformation. In R. Bogdan (Ed.), Belief: Form, content and function. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

Fielding, A. H. (2007). Cluster and classification techniques for the biosciences. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Godfrey-Smith, P. (1996). Complexity and the function of mind in nature. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Harms, W. F. (2000). Adaptation and moral realism. Biology and Philosophy,15. 13. CrossRef

Harms, W. F. (2004a). Information and meaning in evolutionary processes. Cambridge, U.K. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Harms, W. F. (2004b). Primitive content, translation, and the emergence of meaning in animal communication. In K. G. Oller & U. Griebel (Eds.), The evolution of communication systems. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Lewis, D. (1969). Convention. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Macdonald, G. & Papineau, D. (2006). Teleosemantics: New philosophical essays. Oxford, New York: Clarendon Press.

Millikan, R. G. (1984). Language, thought, and other biological categories: New foundations for realism. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Rorty, R. (1979). Philosophy and the mirror of nature. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Skyrms, B. (1996). Evolution of the social contract. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Teleosemantics new philosophical essays on infinity


I am co-author with Kim Sterelny of What is Biodiversity? (University of Chicago Press) reviewed in Metascience . We argue that biological diversity is mistakenly seen as a property of interest only to conservation biologists. On the contrary, it is crucial to explanation and prediction in a wide variety of areas in the life sciences (including ecology, taxonomy, and evolutionary theory) but this breadth of application has led to confusion regarding its proper characterisation and theoretical deployment. I am the editor of Rationis Defensor: Essays in Honour of Colin Cheyne (2012, Springer) and co-editor of A New Science of Religion (2012, Routledge) with Greg Dawes.

From 2013 to 2016 I was the general editor and project co-ordinator for the HelpMePublish Project, a tech startup funded through Otago Innovation Ltd. The project aimed to help academics avoid publication pitfalls and increase their readership by supplying better and more detailed information about journals (the app is discussed at length in this article in Nature ). The project has now wound up.

  • Maclaurin, J. and Sterelny, K. (2008). What is Biodiversity? Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
  • Dawes, G. W. and Maclaurin, J. (Eds.). (2013). A New Science of Religion. New York: Routledge .
  • Maclaurin, J. (Ed.). (2012). Rationis Defensor: Essays in Honour of Colin Cheyne . Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Maclaurin, J. (forthcoming). Is Biodiversity a Natural Quality? In J. Garson, A. Plutynski and S. Sarkar (Eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Biodiversity. New York: Routledge.
  • Maclaurin, J. and Lean, C. (2016). The Value of Phylogenetic Diversity. In R. Pellens and P. Grandcolas (Eds.), Biodiversity Conservation and Phylogenetic Systematics: Species Protection in an Extinction Crisis . New York: Springer. pp. 19-38.
  • Whigham, P. Dick, G. Maclaurin, J. and Owen, C. (2015). Examining the “Best of Both Worlds” of Grammatical Evolution. Paper presented at the Proceedings of the 2015 Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference. Madrid. doi: 10.1145/2739480.2754784
  • Maclaurin, J. and Dyke, H. (2013). What Shall we do with Analytic Metaphysics. A Response to McLeod and Parsons. Australasian Journal of Philosophy. 91(1), 179-182. doi: 10.1080/00048402.2012.762029
  • Maclaurin, J. and Cochrane, T. (2013). The Purpose of Progress: A Response to Schubert. Journal of Bioeconomics. doi: 10.1007/s10818-012-9150-4
  • Dyke, H. and Maclaurin, J. (2013). Evolutionary Explanations of Temporal Experience. In A. Bardon and H. Dyke (Eds.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Time (pp. 521-534). Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Dawes, G. W. and Maclaurin, J. (2013). What is religion. Identifying the Explanadum. In G. W. Dawes & J. Maclaurin (Eds.), A New Science of Religion. New York: Routledge, pp. 11-25.
  • Dawes, G. W. and Maclaurin, J. (2013). Introduction. In G. W. Dawes & J. Maclaurin (Eds.), A New Science of Religion. New York: Routledge, pp. 1-10.
  • Maclaurin, J. and Dyke, H. (2012). What is Analytic Metaphysics For? Australasian Journal of Philosophy. 90(2), 291 - 306. doi: 10.1080/00048402.2011.587439
  • Maclaurin, J. and Cochrane, T. (2012). Evolvability and Progress in Evolutionary Economics. Journal of Bioeconomics. 14(2), 101-114. doi: 10.1007/s10818-011-9116-y
  • Maclaurin, J. (2012). Universal Darwinism: Its Scope and Limits. In J. Maclaurin (Ed.), Rationis Defensor: Essays in Honour of Colin Cheyne (pp. 43 - 56). Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Maclaurin, J. (2011). Commentary on “The transmission sense of information” by Carl T. Bergstrom and Martin Rosvall. Biology and Philosophy. 26(2), 191-194. doi: doi: 10.1007/s10539-010-9233-3
  • Maclaurin, J. (2011). Against Reduction: A Critical Notice of Molecular Models: Philosophical Papers on Molecular Biology by Sahotra Sarkar. Biology and Philosophy. 26(1), 151-158. doi: 10.1007/s10539-009-9183-9
  • Maclaurin, J. (2008). Teleosemantics: New Philosophical Essays by G. MacDonald and D. Papineau. (review) Mind. doi: 10.1093/mind/fzn136
  • Maclaurin, J. (2006). The Innate / Acquired Distinction. In S. Sarkar and F. Pfeifer (Eds.), The Philosophy of Science: An Encyclopedia (pp. 394-400). New York: Routledge.
  • Maclaurin, J. (2006). "The Evolution of Darwinism" by Timothy Shanahan (review). Philosophical Books. 47(2), 191 - 192.
  • Maclaurin, J. (2003). The Good, the Bad and the Impossible. Biology and Philosophy. 18(3), 463 - 476. doi: 10.1023/A:1024139705900
  • Maclaurin, J. (2002). The Resurrection of Innateness. Monist. 85(1), 105 - 130./li>
  • Maclaurin, J. (2002). Why Minds Evolve: A Review of "The Evolution of Agency and Other Essays" by K. Sterelny, Metascience. 11(1), 127-130.
  • Dyke, H. and Maclaurin, J. (2002). 'Thank Goodness That's Over': The Evolutionary Story". Ratio. XV(3), 276 - 292. doi: 10.1111/1467-9329.00191
  • Maclaurin, J. (2001). Fitness: Philosophical Problems in the Encyclopedia of Life Sciences (Vol. 7, pp. 208-212). London: Nature Publishing Group.
  • Maclaurin, J. (2001). "Sex and Death" by K. Sterelny and P. E. Griffiths (review). New Zealand Science Review. 58(1), p. 34.
  • Maclaurin, J. (2001). "Philosophy of Biology" by E. Sober (review). Australasian Journal of Philosophy. 73(1), pp. 166-8.
  • Maclaurin, J. (1998). The metaphysics of biodiversity. PhD Thesis, Australian National Univeristy.
  • Maclaurin, J. (1998). How to Defeat Complexity: A Critical Notice of "Complexity and the Function of Mind in Nature" by P. Godfrey-Smith. Australasian Journal of Philosophy. 76, 491 - 501. doi: 10.1080/00048409812348601
  • Maclaurin, J. (1998). Reinventing Molecular Weismannism: Information in Evolution. Biology and Philosophy. 13, 37 - 59. doi: 10.1023/A:1006573021270
  • Maclaurin, J. (1998). Information in Evolution. MA Thesis, Victoria University of Wellington.

For more information and archived texts see my PhilPapers page. You can follow me on .

Essay on philosophy

Essay/Term paper: Infinity Essay, term paper, research paper: Philosophy

Free essays available online are good but they will not follow the guidelines of your particular writing assignment. If you need a custom term paper on Philosophy: Infinity. you can hire a professional writer here to write you a high quality authentic essay. While free essays can be traced by Turnitin (plagiarism detection program), our custom written essays will pass any plagiarism test. Our writing service will save you time and grade.

There is only one being, continuous, material, and motionless.

Let's take a moment to examine a number line.

5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70

It's pretty simple to understand. The line represents a distance, and the
"|" characters symbolize different points on the line-the exact points are
differentiated by the number below them.

Any number line is understood to have contain points which aren't
necessarily designated by a number. For example, on the above number line we
know that between 5 and 10 we can find the point 7. This example is illustrated

In fact, it is understood that there are an infinite number of points on
any number line. Between 5 and 7 we can find the points 5.009852, 5.9, 6,
6.262623627000029873257690125762, 6.3336, 6.999, 6.9999, etc.

Rulers are examples of how we might commonly use a number line. Different
rulers mark off different distances such as yards, feet, inches, centimeters,
millimeters, and so on. Obviously rulers cannot be used to measure all
distances because some distances may be too small to be measured practically
with the naked eye.

Hypothetically speaking, let's say you had a worm and a razor blade. Let's
also hypothesize that this particular worm is two inches long. Now if you were
to cut this worm exactly in half you should have "two worms" each one inch long.

If you then took one of those one inch pieces and cut it in half you would
then have two pieces each one fourth of an inch long-I don't really know how
many times you can cut a worm in half before it stops becoming two worms and
just becomes pieces of worm.

Theoretically, if you had the right tools, you should be able to continue
cutting that worm in half forever. You simply take one of those 1/4 inch pieces,
cut it, and then you have a 1/8 inch piece. Then you cut it again, and you have
a 1/16..1/34..1/68..1/136..etc. And why not? If you placed this worm (prior to
cutting it at all) on a number line and found it covered the distance between 1
and 2 (and we all know there are an infinite number of points on a number line)
then you should be able to use the worm as a kind of ruler and be able to locate
an infinite number of points on it.

Okay, so now we know worms are an infinite number of points long.
Skyscrapers are also an infinite number of points long. Therefore, worms are as
tall as skyscrapers. Skyscrapers as tall as worms.

Because everything has an infinite number of points and is infinitely
divisible, then everything must be equal in length (width, height, etc.).

How is this possible? Simple. The universe isn't made up of many
different things, it's just one singular object.

Okay, let's consider another point.

You might think it's reasonable to believe that you walked across the room
and sat down in the chair in front of your computer, yet, as I will explain
momentarily, such a notion is ludicrous because motion is an illusion.

If motion is an illusion then clearly the universe is not made up of many
different objects (e.g. a chair, a battleship, a moon) but rather the universe
is one large singular object.

When you see someone walk across a basketball court you tend to think you
are observing motion. But what are you really observing? This person appears
to be traversing from point A to point B across the court.

Let's say that it takes this person 15 seconds to appear to move from point
A to point B. If this is the case, then the person is traveling through an
infinite number of points in a finite amount of time because the line the person
walks from point A to point B can be represented as a number line (and we know
that number lines contain an infinite number of points).

Because infinity implies no end, it's impossible for anything to travel
through an infinite number of points in a finite (limited) amount of time.
Therefore any apparent motion is actually an illusion.

The reason this person cannot move across the basketball court is because
the assumption that many things exist also assumes that everything is divisible
and therefore the distance that any thing must move is divisible into an
infinite number of points. And if, then, a person moving across a basketball
court can never reach any point without first reaching its previous midpoint,
and if there are an infinite number of points, it is impossible to traverse this
infinite number of points in a finite amount of time.

Motion, then, is an illusion and there is only one being, continuous,
material, and motionless.

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Download Rails to Infinity: Essays on Themes from Wittgenstein s Philosophical Investigations (PDF)

Rails to Infinity: Essays on Themes from Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations (PDF)

Rails to Infinity: Essays on Themes from Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations
English | 2001 | ISBN: 067400504X | 496 pages | PDF | 6,3 MB

This volume, published on the fiftieth anniversary of Wittgenstein's death, brings together thirteen of Crispin Wright's most influential essays on Wittgenstein's later philosophies of language and mind, many hard to obtain, including the first publication of his Whitehead Lectures given at Harvard in 1996. Organized into four groups, the essays focus on issues about following a rule and the objectivity of meaning; on Saul Kripke's contribution to the interpretation of Wittgenstein; on privacy and self-knowledge; and on aspects of Wittgenstein's philosophy of mathematics. Wright uses the cutting edge of Wittgenstein's thought to expose and undermine the common assumptions in platonistic views of mathematical and logical objectivity and Cartesian ideas about self-knowledge. The great question remains: How to react to the demise of these assumptions? In response, the essays develop a concerted, evolving approach to the possibilities--and limitations--of constructive philosophies of mathematics and mind. Their collection constitutes a major statement by one of Britain's most important philosophers--and will provide an indispensable tool both for students of Wittgenstein and for scholars working more generally in the metaphysics of mind and language.

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Papineau, David 1947- WorldCat Identities

Papineau, David 1947-

Most widely held works by David Papineau

The philosophy of science by David Papineau ( Book )
68 editions published between 1996 and 2016 in 5 languages and held by 1,102 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
This volume contains the most important contributions to the recent debate on the philosophy of science. The contributors crystallize the often heated arguments of the last two decades, assessing the sceptical attitudes within philosophy of science and the counter-challenges of the scientific realists

Western philosophy. an illustrated guide ( Book )
8 editions published between 2004 and 2012 in English and held by 990 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
What does it mean for someone to exist? What is truth? Are we free to choose to think or act? What is consciousness? Is human cloning justifiable? These are just some of the questions philosophers have attempted to answer, striking right at the heart of what it means to be human. This important new books shows that philosophy need not be dry or intimidating. Its highly original treatment, combining philosophical analysis, historical and biographical background and thought-provoking illustrations, simultaneously informs and stimulates the reader. Western Philosophy: An Illustrated Guide is structured thematically, in terms of major issues, with chapters on World, Mind and Body, Knowledge, Faith, Ethics and Aesthetics, and Society. Cutting across this organization by theme is a parallel organization that focuses on the great thinkers and their influence, as well as the schools or "--Isms" to which they subscribed. A highly accessible introduction to the subject, founded upon impeccable academic scholarship, Western Philosophy: An Illustrated Guide offers life-changing perspectives on what really matters

Thinking about consciousness by David Papineau ( Book )
28 editions published between 2002 and 2008 in English and held by 572 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
'Thinking About Consciousness' is a discussion of recent physicalist ideas about consciousness and its relationship to brain processes, written in an accessible style by David Papineau

Reality and representation by David Papineau ( Book )
19 editions published between 1987 and 1991 in English and Spanish and held by 488 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Theory and meaning by David Papineau ( Book )
16 editions published between 1979 and 2011 in English and held by 432 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
This book is concerned with those aspects of the theory of meaning for scientific terms that are relevant to questions about the evaluation of scientific theories. The contemporary debate about theory choice in science is normally presented as a conflict between two sets of ideas. The book shows that there is no real contest here; that the two sets of ideas are in fact quite compatible

For science in the social sciences by David Papineau ( Book )
22 editions published between 1978 and 1987 in English and Undetermined and held by 432 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

The roots of reason. philosophical essays on rationality, evolution, and probability by David Papineau ( Book )
24 editions published between 2003 and 2007 in English and Undetermined and held by 383 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Mainly reprints of articles first published in various philosophical journals

Introducing consciousness by David Papineau ( Book )
28 editions published between 2000 and 2013 in 3 languages and held by 347 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Introducing Consciousness provides a comprehensive guide to the current state of consciousness studies. It starts with the history of the philosophical relation between mind and matter, and proceeds to scientific attempts to explain consciousness in terms of neural mechanisms, cerebral computation and quantum mechanics. Along the way, readers will be introduced to zombies and Chinese Rooms, ghosts in machines and Schrodinger's cat

Philosophical naturalism by David Papineau ( Book )
10 editions published in 1993 in English and Undetermined and held by 321 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"David Papineau defends the naturalist view that human beings and their mental powers are normal parts of the natural world described by science. The first part of the book shows why this naturalist perspective is an inescapable consequence of certain physical truisms. However, far from this diminishing human beings, Papineau then shows how the central features of mind - consciousness, meaning and knowledge - can still be accommodated within the naturalist perspective. He exposes the widespread intuition that consciousness is non-physical as a confusion occasioned by the special structure of human imagination. Meaning is explained as a biological phenomenon, arising from the need for our actions to be directed towards and guided by features of the external world. And knowledge is understood in terms of the active pursuit of truth, a perspective which yields a realist solution to traditional sceptical problems, and carries important implications for the interpretation of mathematics, modality and morality. This book aims to offer original solutions to the central philosophical problems of mind and knowledge"--Back cover

Teleosemantics. new philosophical essays by Graham Macdonald ( Book )
12 editions published between 2006 and 2009 in English and held by 235 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
'Teleosemantics' seeks to explain meaning and other intentional phenomena in terms of their function in the life of the species. This volume of new essays from a line-up of well-known contributors offers a summary of the current state of the teleosemantics debate

Philosophical devices. proofs, probabilities, possibilities, and sets by David Papineau ( Book )
17 editions published between 2012 and 2013 in English and held by 165 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"This book is designed to explain the technical ideas that are taken for granted in much contemporary philosophical writing. Notions like "denumerability," "modal scope distinction," "Bayesian conditionalization," and "logical completeness" are usually only elucidated deep within difficult specialist texts. By offering simple explanations that by-pass much irrelevant and boring detail, Philosophical Devices is able to cover a wealth of material that is normally only available to specialists. The book contains four sections, each of three chapters. The first section is about sets and numbers, starting with the membership relation and ending with the generalized continuum hypothesis. The second is about analyticity, a prioricity, and necessity. The third is about probability, outlining the difference between objective and subjective probability and exploring aspects of conditionalization and correlation. The fourth deals with metalogic, focusing on the contrast between syntax and semantics, and finishing with a sketch of Godel's theorem. Philosophical Devices will be useful for university students who have got past the foothills of philosophy and are starting to read more widely, but it does not assume any prior expertise. All the issues discussed are intrinsically interesting, and often downright fascinating. It can be read with pleasure and profit by anybody who is curious about the technical infrastructure of contemporary philosophy."--Publisher's website

In conversation Donald Davidson by Donald Davidson ( Visual )
6 editions published between 1997 and 2013 in English and held by 43 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
One-on-one discussions between Davidson and some of the leading philosophers of today

The Papineau discussion by Donald Davidson ( Visual )
2 editions published in 1997 in English and held by 10 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Davidson's views on meaning and truth are discussed in detail

Teleosemantics. new philosopfical essays by Graham Macdonald ( Book )
1 edition published in 2006 in Italian and held by 3 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Truth and Teleology by David Papineau ( )
1 edition published in 1991 in English and held by 2 WorldCat member libraries worldwide

Science and truth by David Papineau ( Book )
1 edition published in 1998 in English and held by 1 WorldCat member library worldwide

The philosophy of philosophy by David Papineau ( Visual )
1 edition published in 2008 in English and held by 1 WorldCat member library worldwide

Teleosemantics New Philosophical Essays ( )
1 edition published in 2006 in English and held by 0 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"Teleosemantics" seeks to explain meaning and other intentional phenomena in terms of their function in the life of the species. This volume of new essays from an impressive line-up of well-known contributors offers a valuable summary of the current state of the teleosemantics debate

Quantum causality. conceptual issues in the causal theory of quantum mechanics by Peter J Riggs ( )
3 editions published in 2009 in English and held by 0 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Focuses on the foundations of quantum physics and the role that causality plays in the microscopic world governed by the laws of quantum mechanics. This work offers a philosophical account of the Causal Theory and the place of causality in the quantum realm