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moderator: Sorry, I had to do that. I couldn't tell what was going on anymore. The first part of the session will be saved. Do you have some questions for Ted at this point?
agnes: to caro: Sorry, I've just sent you an email. In mathematics, I think it has the meaning I intended, but in a normal usage my "incribes" will be "is part of" or "belongs to"
bryan: But you bring it about in realtime: you *now* call to mind something which you've in the past associated with the thing which you *now* want to bring to mind. How can you do it *now* without *now* knowing what it is that you want to bring to mind? And knowing what it is that you want to bring to mind seems to imply that you've brought it to mind.
bryan: Carolyn: On meanness: take out all but the first pair of '*'s if you like.
phil: Sorry, if I took us off topic.
tom: This moves us away from some of the deeper philosophical questions, but granted that Ted's basic approach is correct, and looking at where we might go with it, does he see fuzzy logic as the natural logic to operate on propositions formulated in the conceptual calculus he's outlined in the paper?
jamie: Howdy Ted! Was your paper presenting a theory of concepts, an analogy to help us understand the Objectivist theory, or a way to apply the Objectivism theory to AI?
phil: Would it take us off topic to define how we are using the term fuzzy logic here? Seems unclear
bryan: Fuzzy, even? 8^)
bryan: Carolyn: I propose a general round of what we all think entities are after Ted's session.
phil: I second Bryan's proposal, although I may have to log off for a half hour and come back
moderator: I would love to do that. I see this as the beginning of a beautiful tradition of live interaction.
phil: The 'feedback' idea is interesting. IOE doesn't deal with all the steps in concept-formation or concept-retrieval. Or the levels between implicit and explicit concepts. Or when we have something half-formed and have to retrieve it...do we give that a special name.
Lots of interesting issues here.
moderator: Zactly, Phil!
tom: I think Bryan's suggestion is good.
bryan: I'm sort of an idea person, see. I have ideas, then other people who can actually do things, do things I had ideas for. They would have had the same ideas eventually, but as long as I get them a little bit ahead of time, I get to be an idea person and never have to actually do anything. It's great.
bryan: 'IE', you know, 'in essentia'. Essences came around and cleared his answer. That'll teach anyone to be a realist. Those universals are out to get us, I say!
tom: There's all kinds of weird feedback that goes on. One thing that I considered while reading Ted's paper is that the sound of a word can sometimes suggest it's content to us, as native-speakers of a language. This is why synthetic words like "slythy" make a kind of sense, because the sounds themselves are suggestive. I think this goes beyond folk etymoliogy, and is something that would be diffiult to capture computationally. These sorts of non-idealities are typical in natural systems--we can locate sounds in three-dimensions even though we only have two ears because of really complex interactions between our ears, our shoulders, and the sound field. This kind of thing means we should be cautious about simplified, formal models that hope to capture cognition.
tom: Bryan: that gives me an idea.
phil: Epistemologists should be well-read in psychology and good introspectors as well.
bryan: That's right, Tom! Down with simplified, formal models! Up with Dasein and form of life! Let's just be... in the world. That's wrong, Phil. Epistemologists should know as little as possible. Helps them come up with simplified, formal models if they don't have any actual knowledge handy.
phil: Ted, do you see a continuum in degrees of implicitness of concepts...sort of like focusing a lens till it goes from fuzzy to sharp?
jamie: Ted, do your ec-vector only tell us the denotation of a concepts (i.e., what entities it points out) and not the connotation?
bryan: Jamie: Could you say what connotations are before asking that?
jamie: Bryan: Damn! I knew you were going to ask that!
bryan: It's the Original Sinn of the analytic philosopher. Connotations, that is.
tom: Bryan: Hey, some of my best friends are simplified formal models. We just have to be cautious about them, and not let them borrow the car or anything.
phil: i think all of you guys are on too much caffeine
bryan: I'm outdone.
moderator: I don't remember inviting punsters. I do, however, remember _deleting_ a session... }:-)
bryan: I don't drink caffeine, and I don't get deleted. You apparently *did* invite punsters, as you invited me, and I'm a punster. This room is much more fun than the other one, where it's all lonely and Carolyn mediates your contact with the real world. I felt like Descartes. Except that I had this window into reality whenever I clicked on it to see what was taking you people so long.
jamie: Ted, do your ec-vector only tell us the denotation of a concepts (i.e., what entities it points out) and not the connotation (i.e., what is implied by the concept)?
I would include Tom's example of "slythy" as part of the concept's connotation. Another is that thinking about the concept of POODLE gives me the shakes.
If connotation is missing from your account, is this a problem?
phil: Isn't there a creative tension between 'simplified formal models' and holistic, impressionist, experiential, shifting, 'fuzzy' ones? One should be able to think in both modes?
moderator: And I felt like the omnipotent demon. Still do, realy.
phil: Ted, in IOE there is a discussion of how a child gets a concept more and more clear in his mind...the last steps are affixing a word and a definition ( I may have this out of order).
As children (and as adults) do we 'kind of know' what we mean by, say, 'democracy'--a word our schooteachers like to use--but can't yet define. W it... then know a bit more. We gain more an more control of our concepts through greater and greater a) explicitness, b) definition, c) integration with other concepts. The 'net' becomes wider and the integration sharper and more focused.
jamie: So your not modelling concepts--just the denotative component of concepts.
phil: Actually, there is only a tantalizing hint of discussion of this in IOE--I'm sort of extrapolating.
tom: I think Ted is wrong about this--connotations are missing from his model, because intentionality is. We don't get connotations for free, we get them because we are capable of intending them.
jamie: Interesting. Would you say that connotation would be a distinct function of the mind that depends on concepts, but it not a part of "the conceptual faculty"?
tom: Bryan: by "connotation" I mean the intentional aspect of a concept. By "denotion" I mean the formal aspect.
phil: there are several meanings to connotation--ones whiich are directly connected with the meaning and ones which are not. to connote can mean 'to convey in addition to exact, explicit meaning'. it can also mean 'to be associated with or inseparable from' [Webster New Collegiate].
Unless we clarify which we mean in this discussion, one of us could be talking of loose and the other tight connotation (in the sense I just gave).
jamie: (aside) I thought I knew what 'intention' was until I was told that I was confusing 'intenTion' and 'intenSion'....
tom: Just got a note from Caro saying netscape just crashed on her. We're to carry on amongst ourselves for a minute.
phil: That may not have been clear....loose connotation would be 'in addition to'. tight would be 'inseparable from'. Sorry.
jamie: Ted, was your paper presenting 1. a theory of concepts, 2. an analogy to help us understand the Objectivist theory, or 3. a way to apply the Objectivism theory to AI?
moderator: test moderator
tom: Caro is once again our omnipotent demon.
jamie: (No followup)
moderator: I'll end the formal session on that note. Thank you so much, Ted! I'm glad you wrote the paper it was a great discussion. Wait while I change your status. Back in a sec.
tom: I'll be in and out of the play room, but would still like to hear from any and all participants about how well (or badly) this worked. tom_OF_siduri.net
phil: problem: if we retire to the playroom, don't we need to keep this window open so we can submit questions...the other window doesn't have a way.
moderator: OK, Ted, log out and log into the other room.
moderator: OK, Ted. Go.
jamie: Moderator: wrong window!
tom: Caro: I can hack the code in five minutes to get the user window into the main display area of the cgi. Shall I?
phil: just tell us what we need to do--a) leave both windows open, b) leave user window open, c) refresh user window...or whatever.
tom: Caro, I just shifted you (you qua "caro" :-) to user--you should be able to write to user now as you, if you log out and in.
tom: Leave both windows open for now.
boug: So where am I now? I experience doubt. Am I real? Am I an entity in Bryan's mind? If so, am I also a concept of myself?
ted: Hurm. I appear to only be able to log in to this window.
ted: Scratch that; I see how it works. Cool. Hi everyone.
boug: Ah! Another entity. Perhaps This One can alleviate my doubt. Hail, one called 'Ted'! Exist you?
boug: I engage in undergraduate late night philosophizing.
phil: I don't see why we have to change anything. Can still submit questions in the old window--making it a small portion of the screen, and read the whole conversation in the new window....that way don't have to hack any code.
tom: O but I like to hack code!
Are we really alone?
jamie: Doug, err, boug... it's only 4:14pm...
phil: Tom, in that case I am going to go potty ..unless u are real fast.
ted: Oh dear.
boug: Wet Blanket Phil! Quash not yon Tom's code-fever. He is useful. I must keep him around.
bryan: Only you, Carolyn. The rest of us aren't. Please don't be so big.
bryan: Is Tom changing things? Am I to not write messages, like, say, this one?
tom: Ok, anyone who wants to can log out and log back in and get a normal sort of chat room situation, with the discourse all in the upper frame where the speaker stuff used to be.
bryan: Into what do we log such that things are changed?
boug: The Big is The Good. Ask any rat. They always take the largest piece of anything. That's measurement. Did I omit anything? That's measurement omission.
1 Which proves that theatre and opera are the best of all possible aesthetic practices.
tom: From EEE:EE:
ENTITY, RD: a mind-dependent creation produced by a conscious subject's focusing on some portion of reality in such a way as to proscribe an edge.
boug: Who does that sound like, Ted?
tom: Bryan: just do what you did to log in in the first place. Go to talkin.cgi (just put your cursor on the location bar of your browser--that's the place where the url appears) and hit return and that should take you to the screen where you enter your username and password
bryan: I take it that the main window is the thing we need to log back into.
ted: Is this a guess-if-it-was-Radcliffe-or-if-it-was-Ray-who-wrote-this-segment-of-our-paper game?
phil: tom, do we need to log out (as opposed to refresh) from online/user.html...then log back in to that url?
bryan: Shouldn't that be, 'prescribe' an edge?
boug: NnnnnnnooooooooOOOH. Another Tom.
boug: My footnote didn't come out right though. sorry.
tom: Hmm... I guess there ought to be "some portion of mind-independent reality". Who was responsible for the glossary?
bryan: And BTW, Agnes and Jamie sent questions, and I wrote responses. So I can now paste those responses in here. Unless we're going to just be silly. Carolyn.
phil: request: can we tone down the humor and move on to the question of what is an entity?
boug: Do you mean that, Bryan?
jamie: Carolyn does not exist. There is only boug.
bryan: Seems that Phil and I are of one mind, which makes sense, as we're both entities and therefore in someone's mind. Ted's, I suppose, though Carolyn and Tom might argue that its theirs. (Yes, theirs. They have one between them.)
phil: as far as being of one mind, i am going out of mine now (if you want my two sense)
tom: So why not be silly? I just posted a definition of ENTITY that says they are "condemned or forbidden as harmful or unlawful." Oops.
bryan: At one time, Carolyn told me that *I* was boug, although she was speaking and she could have been using a homonym. Not that there's aaaaanything wrong with that!
bryan: And no, Carolyn, I don't mean that. I mean this. Should I post my Q&A?
bryan: Finally, back to me! Here's Agnes's stuff. Agnes asked: "Now I would sum up my idea of your position as follows:
We can't get through to the mind-independent world directly. There is a
world of appearances/phenomena inserted between us, and this layer(?
network?) is a completely human creation." --- No, that's not what I had in mind. There's one world, and we look directly at it. We impose certain features on the world, such as relations of similarity and distinctness, and being-an-entity and facts. These do not exist in an intermediate world, they exist in the real world in virtue of our presence. I think the problem is this. People often understand the Kantian distinction between noumena and phenomena to be one between two externally related realms of being, one real, one fake and imaginary. That's not, I think, correct. Rather, the phenomenal world is the noumenal world as apprehended, understood, or organized by a conscious being. Agnes continues: "We confront our propositions/theories with this intermediate world and
and state/attribute their truth-value in function of their fit.
I think this implies we cannot speak of existence of such, but only of a
compossibility of phenomena." --- This is more like what I had in mind, but still not quite it. We do confront our propositions/theories with facts, which are not intrinsic to the world but are in it only in relation to us. And they are true if they match the facts. But the facts are facts in the world; they're facts about tropes, and tropes exist quite independently of minds. Agnes also asks: "A further question I have in mind following your introduction of
"capacity model", which treats concepts and intentions in a close
relationship, is whether you think evaluations are present in our
elaborating of the phenomenal layer?" In a sense. We have the conceptualizations we do because they're handy, and they're handy only in relation to our goals, which are then going to be connected with evaluations. She concludes: "Or, what do you think about value
judgements' truth value?" Now, that's hard and I haven't thought about it. In principle, judgments of value ought to be just like the rest of our judgments. '*Lolita* is a good novel' should be true just in case the referent of the subject term, the book (all the tokens of the book, really) has a trope within the category of *good novels*. But, since *all* of our categorizations will be grounded in our judgments about what is good, judgments about what is good seem to be somehow more basic than the rest. And BTW, Agnes, I didn't think that other people didn't have any interest - I just couldn't tell that anyone else was there at all but Robert and Frank!
tom: Phil, you need to log out and log back in via talkin.cgi. However, the mods to the code have also removed the silly-filter, so you might not like what you see. There might even be some colorful remarks.
phil: Tom, I think I'll just stay with the old two windows ...I'm using them right now side by side and it's working.
bryan: So was that okay, Agnes (and others)? Any of that unclear?
boug: Agnes took off a while ago.
phil: Bryan, I don't see why we need to invent a word like tropes, which may or may not be sharply defined, when the English language has perfectly good words--existents, entities, actions, etc.--for what exists out there independent of us.
The Aristotelian-realist-Objectivist tradition takes care of this.
Then you talk about the concept of entity, action, etc. to distinguish what is in our mind. Clear, uncomplicated. Why futz with it? (this question would also go to Tom/Carolyn on edges...at the risk of having everyone gang up on me at once!)
bryan: I thought you couldn't tell who was here? But okay, 'others'. Any of that unclear?
tom: It was as clear to me as it's likely to be before rereading your paper, which I think I'll be able to do with a lot more understanding thanks to this session.
On entities: there was a reason for not saying "prescribed" but looking up both terms I don't see what it was, and clearly "proscribe" is not what we meant. Do you have any idea, boug?
boug: I feel inclined to agree with this completely:
world, and we look directly at it. We impose certain features on the world, such as relations
of similarity and distinctness, and being-an-entity and facts. These do not exist in an
intermediate world, they exist in the real world in virtue of our presence.
phil: Excuse me--I meant to distinguish between 'entity' and 'the concept of entity'.
tom: Phil: we futz with it (is that a silly word, or what? :-) because we don't see objectivism as a form of realism. By realism I mean a commitment to the existence of real universals or natural kinds or any other form of mind-independent categories that cause our concepts.
boug: This part is harder:
e do confront our propositions/theories with facts, which are not intrinsic to
the world but are in it only in relation to us. And they are true if they match the facts. But the
facts are facts in the world; they're facts about tropes, and tropes exist quite independently
bryan: Phil: Well, it seems to me that 'entity' and so forth have an ordinary use, but also a technical philosophical use. The latter doesn't get to ride roughshod over the former, but it does get to give a more refined sense to the term. So I want to refine, say, 'entity', so that it refers to exactly the things you think it refers to, but note that it does so in virtue of blah-blah same story. And in getting clearer, we introduce a purely technical term, 'trope', to aid our discussions. Otherwise I'd be left just saying that entities are kind of independent, and kind of not...
tom: I feel the same inclination as Caro (obviously, as we've only got one mind). I particularly like the formulation: "These do not exist in an intermediate world, they exist in the real world in virtue of our presence."
boug: Are facts about tropes? Or are they perhaps composed of tropes? Aren't the propositions the things that are about?
tom: I'd be clearer on Bryan's thesis if I had a better grip on to what in reality TROPE refered.
boug: (I know that Agnes left because she sent me a note a bit ago.)
bryan: Uh, both. Take an ordinary fact, like the fact that Bashful is fat. This is a fact about Bashful, and it's also a fact about which things are fat. But it's also composed of both Bashful and a fatness trope. This is a different sense of 'about' from the one that goes with intentional states.
jamie: What facts in reality give rise to TROPES? Answer: tropes. 'Nuff said.
bryan: For tropes: take a universal. Now take all of the instances of it. Now get rid of the universal. Now you've got a bunch of tropes. A trope is a particular quality of a particular thing, which may bear similarity relations to other tropes, and a bundle of which constitute an entity. Better?
bryan: Jamie: I know you're kidding, but Rand actually says that there's this guy, and he's a fact. So for clarity, things aren't facts, and neither are tropes. Facts are made of tropes. (In some suitable sense of 'made of'.)
boug: Analogy for Tom and Ted (you can argue with me): define a class. Now, an object is any member of that class. I take this to be analogous to what Bryan just said about universals.
phil: Bryan, I think the dictionary use in a good dictionary does capture what is needed. Websters Collegiate--entity= "independent, separate, or self-contained existence"... "the existence of a thing as contrasted with its attributes". I would always _start_ a philosophical discussion with the dictionary. It's amazing how often the correct sense is in there (words do have multiple senses).
If the sense is in there that works and it's in common usage, why create a made-up word, which may or may not cause confusion or ambiguity. In some cases,different philosophers in the analytic tradition have created new meanings for terms and written papers arguing over it
Why not stick with ordinary English unless absolutely force away?
bryan: Bashful is a cat of mine, btw. He's fat. He's a bigger, fatter brother to Apollo, the cat on the couch in the paper. I have three cats. I like to talk about them in papers and online. 8^)
tom: I'd be happier if there were a way of coming at tropes that didn't pass through universals. It makes me worry that "real universals" are being smuggled in. But yes, that's clearer, and I need to mull on it a bit now.
boug: Sorry. I should have said, instance, or instantiation. Been a while since I did OOP.
phil: In other words, if we use 'entity' and so forth, we may be able to have same reference...the dictionary...and not have the very debate we are having on what a 'trope is!
tom: Bryan: me too.
bryan: Well, actually, it's J. L. Austin who always started his papers by appeal to the Dictionary. (And he always capitalized 'dictionary', too.) Tom: I could get clear on tropes slower without appealing to universals, but this is fast. And I can hardly smuggle in the universals by saying, 'Now get rid of the universal'! 8^)
phil: It may be that Bryan with his 'get rid of the universal' post a minute ago to define tropes was talking about an 'existent'.
But then doesn't my point still stand...there is already a term in the dictionary/realist/aristotelian tradition, so why invent language?
tom: Phil: the argument of EEE is precisely against the definition of entity you cite. There is no "separate" without a mind that separates. We started out with a notion of entity a lot closer to the one you cite, but it just isn't consistent with the many examples we give. What is "separate" is entirely context-dependent, and the context is set by the purpose of the knowing subject. Thus, entities are not constituted independently of minds, because minds are what decide what is "separate" in any given case. So "separatedness" is the criterion for entityhood, as we see it.
bryan: Tropes are more directly correlated with properties than entities. If I could, I'd just use 'property'. However, realists have co-opted that term and like to say that things share properties. So we came up with a term that no one had co-opted, so there couldn't possibly be any philosophical baggage connected to them. Now we have to start from scratch explaining it to people, but that's better than having to de-educate and re-educate people. And remember, trope theory is really an insider thing, it's not so much for public consumption 'as-is'. One would ordinarily want to boil anything expressed in it down before presenting it to non-professionals.
bryan: phil: to avoid the realist/aristotelian tradition!
boug: Actually, if we're talking about Rand's work, 'unit' is closer to trope than 'entity' is.
bryan: Tom: I hesitate over the word 'constituted' in your last remark, but otherwise think it's about right.
tom: Bryan: well sure you can, if you've got to a place you could only get to using universals. Like driving into the middle of the desert and blowing up your car. You can't get back, because the only way you could get there by driving in. So even though you've removed the car, your position is still dependent on it. But I'll accept hat there are other ways of getting to tropes.
tom: Bryan: Yeah, "constituted" is tricky. I don't mean it a bad way, or anything.
bryan: Actually, Carolyn might be onto something. A trope would be one of the units which is a member/referent/whatever of a concept. That's just as bad in one sense, because we're still defining tropes in terms of some operations we perform on them, and they're the things which are independent of of us, but it should get the point across without a theory which you specifically don't like.
tom: I've got to go turn into a pumpkin.
Bryan: if you could come to the Meeting we'd be able to sort out our differences in a few face-to-face hours.
Caro: This has worked better than I'd dreamed it possibly could. Thanks!
bryan: Hey, last night I constituted yo momma... oh, wait, that won't work at all. No, apparently one can't mean it in a bad way.
phil: Tom, there is a subtle distinction in the word 'separate': an entity does not have to be separate from other entities (it can be a part or component for example). 'separate' in this context means having separate existence from mind. I certainly agree that you always find entities glued into other entities out there in the universe. They are not _constituted_ independently, but _recognized and isolated_ independently. Rand makes this point in IOE somewhere and I would agree. We can do many examples if need be.
boug: Thank you, Tom!
bryan: Phil: That's not a distinction in the word 'separate', it's a distinction between things from which we want to say something is separate. Apparently we're all in agreement that entities are entities as such only because we've got minds and look at 'em funny. I want to hold it at that and say that entities are external, whereas Ted wanted to say that in virtue of that, they're internal. But Tom's point I take it is that things are separate from one another only because we separate them from one another, so their separateness from other things is not separate from us, even though the things that are separate from one another are separate from us.
boug: Bryan: (Contra Tom): I don't think it's a real problem to get to tropes via universals. After all, it's not that he doesn't think that there are universals; he just doesn't think they have mind-independent existence.
bryan: He's going to turn into a pumpkin? I patently refuse to admit that the utility of the concept PUMPKIN can best be served by assimilating Tom to the rest of its referents/members/whatevers.
bryan: Carolyn, who is 'he' in that last remark?
boug: And I don't think that defining tropes in terms of some operations we perform on them is a problem either (and shouldn't be, for Tom). We're only going to be able to talk about something that we've picked out, and however we picked out the individual x's the first time we experienced them, NOW we're picking them out by means of the universal that we've constructed to categorize them. So I see this as a legitimate heuristic.
boug: Bryan: 'he' is Tom.
bryan: Well, it's an okay heuristic, but it can't get at the essence of a trope. That would have to involve their radical indepdendence from us. You can't possibly get at that by citing us and our relations to them. Obviously, we can only get at tropes by relating to them, but that doesn't mean that they're there only insofar as we relate to them. (I'm not criticizing anyone here, just trying to be Kripke-clear about everything.)
bryan: Okay. Internal to my conception of a universal is mind-independence. For me, all of the 'instantiations' of a universal are mind-independent, but that they're insantiations of the same universal isn't. In fact, they're not instantiations of the same universal at all ('cuz there ain't no such thang), rather they're members/whatever of the same concept.
bryan: Is Ted still here?
bryan: It's topical now, so I'm going to paste in the Q&A with Jamie. --- Jamie asked: "1. I am convinced that direct realism implies that some entities are
intrinsically distinct. This is because direct realism, at least
Rand's, is a direct awareness of objects as objects. In that case, I am
not sure what role (if any) direct realism plays in your theory. If it
plays a role, and then I want to know what mind-independent things are we
directly aware of." The mind-independent things are tropes (other than the mind-dependent tropes, of course). They have lots of relations between themselves, and they have relations with us, too (and BTW, we're bundles of tropes, too). In virtue of some of those relations, some tropes get to be distinct from one another, and some get to be similar to one another, and some get to be bundled together with one another, and so forth. Perception is directly of tropes, but is of them insofar as it organizes them together and so forth. Better? Jamie's second question: "2. I think I misread the term 'tropes' as 'Natural Kinds', so that is why
I was saying that I wasn't sure how your view about Tropes was really
different from the realists' view. Do Natural Kinds play a role in your
theory? If so, then how are these Natural Kinds different from the
realist's Universals?" Natural kinds are natural, I think, only in relation to the cognitive needs of someone whom (who?) they strike as naturally of a kind. So I don't accept natural kinds in any realist sense. However, I will accept them in a certain sense. Let's take the kind, water. All water shares a property we regard as essential: being composed of molecules of H2O. And this forms a natural kind. But it forms a natural kind only in regard to our decision to regard the tropes of things which have the most causal/explanatory power as essential, and our belief that science discovers essences in this sense. I take science to reveal the basic, underlying structure of the world, and I relativize my own personal ontology to its discoveries. 'My own personal ontology' isn't the stuff in the paper, by the way, it's not metaphysics. It's my ordinary judgments about what things exist and so forth. I think that there are electrons because scientists tell me so, and that there isn't a God, because scientists don't tell me so. So there are 'natural kinds' in the sense that science works within a set of categorizations, and my criterion for the naturalness of a kind is whether science demarcates it. This is roughly, I think, what Putnam et al. want, but put the way I like.
boug: Phil, Rand is not clear on that last point, about entities and their separatedness. Yes, Rand makes the point, but then she retracts it repeatedly and fudges and changes her mind. You are actually citing the Ray-Radcliffe view.
bryan: Okay, Ted. We're going to have to talk about this entities are mental thing. It seems to me that the fact that something has a certain status only in relation to some other thing does not imply that the first thing is within the second thing. But you seem to make that inference. Why?
ted: I agree that something having a certain status only in relation to some other thing does not imply that in the general case, yes. Entityhood seems to me to be a special case.
phil: boug, it would take us astray to debate whether Rand was clear on separatedness. Suffice it to say I had to read her several times to see what her doctrine was.
bryan: Okay, let me ask this. What exactly do you mean when you employ a spatial metaphor here? You say that entities are 'in' minds. What precisely does that mean? I take it you don't mean that minds are like boxes and things go in them.