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articles in english
1. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Susana Raquel Barbosa Instrumental and Technical Utopias
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While utopia seems to have low esteem in current philosophical theory, technique, conversely, is increasingly followers. Utopia, as the original creation of the Renaissance, currently taking shape in different configurations to classical. Although the technique on permanent open spaces philosophical discussion, in some interpretations of the original elements remain τέχνη. From two operational definitions of utopia (Horkheimer) and technical (Bloch) I propose a division of utopias to display the proper place to instrumental uto-pias and, within them, to technical utopias. We describe Bloch’s proposal, we point his limitations and propose overcome it with the critical theory of technology approach
2. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Mikhail Epstein The Art of Virtual World-Making and the New Vocation for Metaphysics
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The power of technology is extended to the fundamental properties of existence, metaphysics becomes increasingly active in its ability to change these properties. This paper discusses a new relationship between philosophy and the advanced technologies that I call onto-technologies, because they change the foundations of being, the structure of existence and the way in which we experience it. In the past, technology was preoccupied with material particulars, while taking care of concrete human needs, such as food, shelter and transportation. Philosophy, in its turn, was preoccupied with big ideas, the first principles, essences and universals. Technology used to be utilitarian, while philosophy was speculative. Today technology and philos-ophy are moving ever closer towards each other: the power of technology is extended to the fundamental properties of the Universe, while philosophy becomes increasingly active in its ability to define and change these properties. Onto-technology has the power to create a new spatio-temporal continuum, a new sensory environment and modes of its perception. As a result, technology is now moving not away from, but towards, metaphysics; this way, the two of them are meeting at the very core of being, where the principles and universals traditionally considered the prerogative of philosophical study can be found.
3. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Henry Flantrmsky e-Democracy: Rethinking Democracy Under ICT’s Light
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This paper is an effort to remark the importance of re-conceptu-alize what is democracy considering the importance that the new technologies, especially concerning to the information and communication. It is important to redefine the model of political action according to the technological advance of our era, and for that is necessary a discussion in which the philosophical aspect get in touch with technology to re-dimension the scope of democracy nowadays. To prepare the field for this new concept of e-Democrcy, first of all I present the case of an earlier attempt to revitalize democracy with new technologies, it is the case of cable TV, and after that I show the reason for its fail. After the exposition of the cable TV case, I show some of the conditions that are necessary to make the transition from analog democracy to digital democracy or e-Democracy.
4. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Aristides Gogoussis How is Engineering Design of Operation Possible?: The Role of Causal Unilateralization and the Conception of Praxiological Methodologies
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The framework of engineering design for operation as a problem that seeks a satisfactory solution calls for a thorough consideration of issues such as the partial ignorance of lawfulness, of interdependence as well as of unmodeled dynamics of subsets of reality. Moreover the consideration should account for the inability of the complete and exhaustive mathematical representation of such subsets. A key element in the resolution of this problem is the possibility of causal unilateralization. This element is not innate in physical phenomena but is brought to the surface for exploitation by ingenious engineering contrivances. In conjunction with a guiding principle projecting the achievement of accuracy despite the unavoidable inaccuracy of the means, and along with conforming praxiological methods, the whole design procedure renders the goal of achieving any well-defined operation feasible. In addition, it follows that this line of approach leads to the distinct characteristic that for any desired outcome what is sought after is not the derivation of the necessary but rather the sufficient conditions which will guarantee an admissible manifestation of it. On the way it becomes apparent that engineering design of operation is a process that involves possible realities.
5. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Vitaly Gorokhov Galileo Galilei as Philosopher of Technology and Technology Assessment Expert
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Three main features of engineering thought have formed over the centuries: artistic, practical (or technical), and scientific. Galileo chose an approach unusual for scholastic science: technology began to depend on mathematical knowledge and models. At the same time, he criticized the craftsmens’ approach to technical activity, which overlooked scientific knowledge and the laws of nature in building machinery. Galileo’s works paved the way for the formation of engineering thinking and activity in practice as well as theory. He personified a new figure, the engineer-scientist. His geometric-kinematic theoretical schematic model of the machines was a beginning and precondition of the application of the natural scientific theory to the first special engineering science – the theory of the mechanisms and machines or kinematics. Galileo elaborated not only a new scientific methodology oriented to technical needs, but also a new philosophy of technology based on scientific knowledge.
6. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Viorel Guliciuc From Wisdom to Digital Wisdom as Negotiated Identity
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When the Technological Singularity (Bostrom, Kurzweil, Smart) is more and more near, the human-machine interaction covers various merging processes. Yet, in the Digital Era, we have to deal with and manage an amazing plethora of different identities (plural, multiple, alternative, concurrent, divergent, virtual, and so on). This engages us in a discussion on the criteria of the identity and it leads us from ‘no entity without identity’ (Quine) to ‘no identity without a process’ (Boyd). We also have to deal with the problem of what the “wisdom” is nowadays. In the last decades, we have continuously passed from the classical wisdom – word and face to face based, toward a multi-channelled, digital wisdom (Prensky) – a symbiotic, non-generic and non-unitary wisdom (Guliciuc). The analysis of those merging processes and multi-faceted, processual identities engages us in the search for a classification of our “merged identities” in the Digital Era, toward identities that are continuously negotiated.
7. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Charalampos Kokkinos Technology and Public Life: Aspects of a Framework for a Critical Theory of the Technological Society
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In our everyday lives, we come into contact with a series of technological objects and use a lot of technologies. Usually, the “relation” we develop with these objects works, on a first level, for our benefit. On the other hand, we actually know little about the technologies we use in order to accomplish various activities. Technologies have neither been developed, nor do they exist independently, even though we tend to perceive them as natural objects in themselves. Perhaps they are as much defined by causal laws, which are relevant to their “behavior” as specific artifacts, as they obtain ad hoc characteristics through our significations, which already belong to a specific social system. This ignorance of common sense often leads to the exclusion of a number of topics that are intertwined with the technological phenomenon from the everyday agenda of political debate. Moreover, the errors that stem from our unsophisticated or even unconscious attitude towards these artifacts have important consequences on various areas, including “development” and “work”, education, the environment, and human communication itself. This short article will try to present elements of a critical theory of technology (highlighting topics and themes that emerge in the works of Andrew Feenberg) in order to illustrate the need to link the technological phenomenon with everyday political practice.
8. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Neb Kujundzic Does the a priori Belong to Science and Technology?
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In this paper, I intend to support a currently controversial approach to the a priori -- the one that respects its fundamental role in science, and I furthermore suggest the relevance of the a priori may be expanded to technology. I shall address the following three issues: a priori in scientific and technological methodology, a priori and the essence of science and technology, and a priori in the assessment of science and technology.
9. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Golfo Maggini Dreyfus and Borgmann on the Late Heidegger
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Albert Borgmann’s account of modern technology is considered to be one of the leading positions in the American philosophy of technology which is informed by continental philosophical “paradigms”, such as hermeneutics. In particular Martin Heidegger’s late hermeneutics of the technological world has been a powerful source of inspiration for Borgmann, as has become evident in his Technology and the Character of Contemporary Life. In our paper we will argue that, despite the strengths of Borgmann’s analysis both in the 1984 book as well as in his more recent studies, its obvious weakness pertains to the negligence or underestimation of Heidegger’s leading phenomenological line of thought. This negligence or underestimation compromises his approach to Heidegger’s account of technology, as becomes evident in the critiques addressed to him by phenomenologists, such as Hubert Dreyfus, and “postphenomenologists”, such as Don Ihde and Peter-Paul Verbeek.
10. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Edgar Patiño Barreto Technological Artifacts and Complexity: Components Heuristic for Conceptual Basis of Technological Artifact
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If we assume that the artifacts have framed their functional level low the conceptual construction, under the planes defined from intentional functions and duties provided as givers of meaning, which has reduced its conceptualization instrumental for the design process. In this paper, we will focus on discussions of technological artifact referring the concept of the interface, which is defined in the processes of interaction with complex objects with their context. From approach defined the construct of technological artifacts from heuristics, beyond levels of functional troubleshooting framed isolated artifact in interaction, in from interaction with their technological context. This paper aims, first, interpreting technological artifacts from heuristic factors provided by the sciences of complexity. That interface defines the process as interactive relationship with the context and with the construction of heuristics that solve problems of varying degrees of complexity.
11. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Rosa Rantanen Aging, Death, and the Ethics of Life Extending Technologies
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In his paper “Is Ageing Bad for us?” (2011) Michael Hauskeller claims that because aging and death are not bad for us, we are in no hurry to develop means for radical life extension. Looking into this claim, I argue that Hauskeller’s conclusion is too strong. Even if we accept that aging and death are not bad for us, it does not follow that we could not still appreciate a long life over them. More important, accepting the harmlessness of aging and death does not imply that we should restrict the development of considerable life extension technologies. I suggest that even though Hauskeller’s argument is interesting, it is not enough to make any statements about the overall desirability of developing life extension technologies. He ignores several other lines of argumentation (such as the meaning of individual freedom) that might change the way we see the technologies. The badness of death and aging are metaphysical concepts that are not very well adapted to a more practical context; they are not sufficient tools for dealing with the practical ethical challenges that we face when discussing considerable life extension technologies.
12. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Nikolaos Smyrnakis Plato, Facebook and the Reversal of Utilitarianism
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Facebook is one of the most controversial and well-known social networking sites. This website indicates a possible form of surveillance of the activities of each user through appropriate software controlled by its creators and their associates The analysis of this surveillance is in direct relation to the ethical and political perceptions of Plato and of the English philosopher Jeremy Bentham specific to the ideal State and the prison model Panoptikon This comparison brings to light the similarities and thorny differences of these three forms of surveillance and demonstrates the difference of the guardians’ transparent lifestyle of the state as opposed to the supervisors’ opaque mode of action on Facebook. We also try to pin-point the reversal of the theory of utilitarianism that takes place on Facebook, providing food for further thought and consideration.
13. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Sabine Thuermel Potentiality and Actuality of Sociotechnical Environments
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Computer-based simulations provide a link between theory and experiment. They demonstrate how the actual and the potential may be linked in virtual environments and socio-technical spaces in general. The virtuality in technologically induced contexts is to be explained based on Hubig’s two-tiered presentation of technology in general as a medium. In order to understand agency and interagency in sociotechnical environments a concept of multi-dimensional, gradual agency is introduced. It is shown that technology in age of information no longer offers passive toolboxes to be used but provides a wide variety of active participants for our sociotechnical environments.
14. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Qian Wang Dao from the Perspective of Philosophy of Technology
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Dao in traditional Chinese philosophy references not just “the way” or nature (in Daosim) or human social order (in Confucianism) but also the way for best performing certain technical activities. Understanding the meaning and value of this aspect of Dao can be of use to philosophical reflection experience in the development of modern technology.
15. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Wei Zhang Can Morality be Materialized?
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The idea of “materialization of morality” is now attracting increasing attention in the field of philosophy of technology. It bears great theoretical and practical meanings. In terms of theoretical aspect, it provides a “material answer” to the traditional ethical question “how to act” for the disciplines of ethics; for philosophy of technology, it transforms the externalist study approach to the internalist study approach. In terms of practical aspect, it provides a material way on disciplining human being’s actions. Furthermore, it expands the view of industrial design, adding the new dimension of morality into design activity. However, it also confronts several challenges. One is that, if the choices of human are decided by technology, then, where is the free will? In what sense can we still be human? Should we still be responsible for the bad results in some special situations? If so, how much responsibility should we take? The second is that it may lead to technocracy. Last but not lest, But if the designer becomes the leading character in “doing’’ ethics, then what can ethicists and philosophers do? What is their new role? So, new answers must be figured out to solve these questions. In this paper, I will introduce the principle or method of “libertarian paternalism” and “field philosophy” into this approach.
articles in german
16. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Suzana Alpsancar Koennen und Sollen in der Moderne: Vergleich technikkritischer Argumentationslinien am Beispiel von Hannah Arendt und Arnold Gehlen
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In der moderne setzen sich eine Reihe von Autoren kritisch mit der technischen Entwicklung auseinander. Häufig verbindet sich daher eine analytische Sicht auf Technik mit einer “diagnostischen” Einschätzung der eigenen Zeit, welche in der Regel über einen historischen Rückblick dargelegt wird. Im Rahmen eines größeren Projektes wird dem Verdacht nachgegangen, dass sich dieser technikkritische Diskurs aus einer Reihe von Argumentationslinien zusammensetzt, die anthropologisch, geschichtsphilosophisch, wissenschaftshistorisch, zeitdiagnostisch und normativ verfahren. An dieser Stelle sollen zentrale Aspekte der Argumentationslinien von Hannah Arendt und Arnold Gehlen verglichen werden. Beide Autoren operieren in ihren Untersuchungen zur (modernen) Technik interessanterweise auf zwei Ebenen: einer begrifflich-analytischen (anthropologischen) sowie auf einer historisch-normativen Ebene. Bezogen auf ihre Zeitdiagnose lassen sich einige Ähnlichkeiten feststellen von denen ausgehend hier geprüft werden soll, auf Basis welcher theoretischer Voraussetzungen und Figuren sie zu der jeweiligen Einschätzung gelangen. Während Gehlen von seinem Interessen an den “Wesenseigenschaften” des Menschen zur Technik kommt, scheint es bei Arendt anders herum zu sein – weil sie sich für die Frage interessiert, was wir tun, wenn wir tätig sind, sieht sie sich auf eine grundlegende Bedingtheit der menschlichen Existenz zurück geworfen.
17. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Sebastian Harrach Transklassischer Zugang zu Nichtwissen mittels maschinellem Lernen
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Maschinell lernende Artefakte werden in einer Vielzahl von Kontexten eingesetzt, in denen Konstellationen von Eingabereizen eine bestimmte Regelmäßigkeit aufweisen oder aufweisen könnten. Diese Reize werden über Autoadaptionsprozesse mit Reaktionen verknüpft. Reiz-Reaktion-Verknüpfungen dieser Art können sehr komplexe Kausalstrukturen abbilden oder Strukturen in großen, ungreifbaren Datenmengen identifizieren. Die notwendigen Prozessschritte sind jedoch meist extrem komplex und zumindest für menschliche Nutzer nicht mehr transparent. Eine Steuerung der Autoadaptionsprozesse solcher Artefakte ist entsprechend nur sehr indirekt über eine starke Vorstrukturierung oder gar nicht möglich. Eine Vorstrukturierung ermöglicht den Einsatz von maschinellem Lernen als transklassische Informationstechnik für die Lösung von Optimierungsproblemen. In Fällen, in denen eine Steuerung nicht möglich ist oder erwünscht, ist ein anderes Potenzial maschinell lernender Artefakte erkennbar. Dieses besteht in der Fähigkeit zur Entdeckung von interessanten und bisher unbekannten Strukturen, die den Nutzer zur Formulierung bisher unbekannter Konzepte befähigen können. Entdeckend eingesetztes maschinelles Lernen ermöglicht einen Umgang mit Nichtwissen und kann für die Erschließung eines neuen Raums technischen Handelns eingesetzt werden. Diese Technik wird in diesem Beitrag herausgearbeitet und als Welttechnik beschrieben.
articles in spanish
18. Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy: Volume > 64
Elba Del Carmen Riera Technology and Cultural Change
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For a long time it was thought that the universe was a deterministic machine, that we could predicted their behavior and formulate its exact and predictable laws; however from the mid twentieth century have happened extraordinary discoveries of science, such as the systems theory, information theory, cybernetics, dissipative structures, molecular biology, chaos, fractals, nonclassical logics and other advances have given us a new view of reality that can be described as complex. All of this has destabilized the unconditional faith in science and technology as guarantor for its predictability and exactitude, and it has been accompanied by a cultural change that incorporates other attitudes such as “risk”, “precaution questioning”, “humility”, against the overwhelming and unpredictable development of technology that requires a new behavior on the part of thinkers in theory and practice, they have the responsibility of guiding the uncertainty created by this new culture. Against this situation, there are reflections from Philosophy trying to orient, ethically, the behaviors who have the responsibility to make decisions against this cultural change.