Archive

quotes

“the light from an object is perceived by us as the subjective excitation of the optic nerve, but as the objective form of something outside the eye itself.”

marx, the fetishism of commodities and the secret thereof, capital, a critique of political economy, new york, 1970, p. 72

“Let me suggest the beginning toward some resolution of this problem of two cultures by turning to the thoughts of Robert Oppenheimer, one of my most distinguished predecessors as director of the Institute for Advanced Study. Four years before C.P. Snow’s lecture, Oppenheimer gave a lecture about two cultures; he used the categories of scientist and artist. He concluded that both scientists and artists had become highly specialized, isolated, and to some extent irrelevant to society. And he, like Snow, suggested that both groups expose themselves to other people-both to teach and to learn from those around them. The purpose of this exposure is not to dilute their own efforts, or to take orders from those who do not understand what they are doing. The proper role of scientists and artists, he said, is to “not merely find new truth and communicate it to his fellows, but that he teach, that he try to bring the most honest and intelligible account of new knowledge to all who will try to learn.” This teaching, when successful, is the first set of girders across the gulf between the two cultures.”

http://www.media.rice.edu/media/NewsBot.asp?MODE=VIEW&ID=6430&SnID=2

Curiosity (from Latin curiosus “careful, diligent, curious,” akin to cura “care”) is an emotion related to natural inquisitive behavior such as exploration, investigation, and learning, evident by observation in human and many animal species. The term can also be used to denote the behavior itself being caused by the emotion of curiosity. As this emotion represents a drive to know new things, curiosity is a major driving forces behind scientific research and other disciplines of human study.
Wikipedia def

An inquiry is any process that has the aim of augmenting knowledge, resolving doubt, or solving a problem. A theory of inquiry is an account of the various types of inquiry and a treatment of the ways that each type of inquiry achieves its aim.
wikipedia def

“A man is walking on a warm day. The sky was clear the last time he observed it; but presently he notes, while occupied primarily with other things, that the air is cooler. It occurs to him that it is probably going to rain; looking up, he sees a dark cloud between him and the sun, and he then quickens his steps. What, if anything, in such a situation can be called thought? Neither the act of walking nor the noting of the cold is a thought. Walking is one direction of activity; looking and noting are other modes of activity. The likelihood that it will rain is, however, something suggested. The pedestrian feels the cold; he thinks of clouds and a coming shower.”
John Dewey, How We Think, pp. 6-7

“A traveller, who has lost his way, should not ask, Where am I? What he really wants to know is, Where are the other places” – Alfred North Whitehead

“I thought I had reached port; but I seemed to be cast back again into the open sea” (Deleuze and Guattari, after Leibniz)

People have individual traits that predispose them to be more or less responsive to certain stimuli; the interaction between the learned associations of the clinical situation and the person’s particular biology produces a response. The response could be a basic physiological process such as modulation of sensory processing, release of neurotransmitters or alterations in hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis or immune system activity. The placebo response could also be some more complex physiological process including change in mood, change in motivation/effort or cognitive set-shifting.

http://brain.oxfordjournals.org/content/131/11/2812.full

The placebo can be any clinical intervention including words, gestures, pills, devices and surgery (Chaput de Saintonge and Herxheimer, 1994)

“Pretend play has recently been of great interest to researchers studying children’s understanding of the mind. One reason for this interest is that pretense seems to require many of the same skills as mental state understanding, and these skills seem to emerge precociously in pretense. Pretend play might be a zone of proximal development, an activity in which children operate at a cognitive level higher than they operate at in nonpretense situations. Alternatively, pretend play might be fool’s gold, in that it might appear to be more sophisticated than it really is. This paper first discusses what pretend play is. It then investigates whether pretend play is an area of advanced understanding with reference to 3 skills that are implicated in both pretend play and a theory of mind: the ability to represent one object as two things at once, the ability to see one object as representing another, and the ability to represent mental representations.”

Child development. 1993 Apr;64(2):348-71.
Pretend play skills and the child’s theory of mind.
Lillard AS
Stanford University, CA.

“One of the enduring objects used to represent our technological future is the robot. This legacy means that its promise has the ability to evolve in accordance with our societal and cultural dreams and aspirations, it can reflect the current state of technological development, our hopes for that technology and also our fears; fundamentally though after almost a century of media depictions and public demonstrations, the robot is yet to enter our homes and lives in any meaningful way.” http://augerloizeau.tumblr.com/