•  3
    Studia Logica 86 (2): 147-148. 2007.
  •  162
    Models and Reality—A Review of Brian Skyrms’s Evolution of the Social Contract
    with Martin Barrett, Ellery Eells, Elliott Sober, and Brian Skyrms
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 59 (1): 237. 1999.
    Human beings are peculiar. In laboratory experiments, they often cooperate in one-shot prisoners’ dilemmas, they frequently offer 1/2 and reject low offers in the ultimatum game, and they often bid 1/2 in the game of divide-the-cake All these behaviors are puzzling from the point of view of game theory. The first two are irrational, if utility is measured in a certain way.1 The last isn’t positively irrational, but it is no more rational than other possible actions, since there are infinitely ma…Read more
  •  260
    Four Approaches to Supposition
    with Benjamin Eva and Ted Shear
    Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy. forthcoming.
    Suppositions can be introduced in either the indicative or subjunctive mood. The introduction of either type of supposition initiates judgments that may be either qualitative, binary judgments about whether a given proposition is acceptable or quantitative, numerical ones about how acceptable it is. As such, accounts of qualitative/quantitative judgment under indicative/subjunctive supposition have been developed in the literature. We explore these four different types of theories by systematica…Read more
  •  113
    Two Approaches to Belief Revision
    with Ted Shear
    Erkenntnis 84 (3): 487-518. 2019.
    In this paper, we compare and contrast two methods for the revision of qualitative beliefs. The first method is generated by a simplistic diachronic Lockean thesis requiring coherence with the agent’s posterior credences after conditionalization. The second method is the orthodox AGM approach to belief revision. Our primary aim is to determine when the two methods may disagree in their recommendations and when they must agree. We establish a number of novel results about their relative behavior.…Read more
  • Introduction
    with Cherie Braden
    In Cherie Braden, Rodrigo Borges & Branden Fitelson (eds.), Themes From Klein, Springer Verlag. 2019.
  •  241
    How Not to Detect DesignThe Design Inference. William A. Dembski
    with Brandon Fitelson, Christopher Stephens, and Elliott Sober
    Philosophy of Science 66 (3): 472-488. 1999.
    As every philosopher knows, “the design argument” concludes that God exists from premisses that cite the adaptive complexity of organisms or the lawfulness and orderliness of the whole universe. Since 1859, it has formed the intellectual heart of creationist opposition to the Darwinian hypothesis that organisms evolved their adaptive features by the mindless process of natural selection. Although the design argument developed as a defense of theism, the logic of the argument in fact encompasses …Read more
  •  127
    Measuring Confirmation and Evidence
    with Ellery Elles
    Journal of Philosophy 97 (12): 663-672. 2000.
  •  29
    Studia Logica 86 (3): 351-352. 2007.
  •  71
    Probability, confirmation, and the conjunction fallacy
    with Crupi Vincenzo and Tentori Katya
    Thinking and Reasoning 14 (2): 182-199. 2008.
    The conjunction fallacy has been a key topic in debates on the rationality of human reasoning and its limitations. Despite extensive inquiry, however, the attempt of providing a satisfactory account of the phenomenon has proven challenging. Here, we elaborate the suggestion (first discussed by Sides et al., 2001) that in standard conjunction problems the fallacious probability judgments experimentally observed are typically guided by sound assessments of confirmation relations, meant in terms of…Read more
  •  225
    Logical Foundations of Evidential Support
    Philosophy of Science 73 (5): 500-512. 2006.
    Carnap's inductive logic (or confirmation) project is revisited from an "increase in firmness" (or probabilistic relevance) point of view. It is argued that Carnap's main desiderata can be satisfied in this setting, without the need for a theory of "logical probability." The emphasis here will be on explaining how Carnap's epistemological desiderata for inductive logic will need to be modified in this new setting. The key move is to abandon Carnap's goal of bridging confirmation and credence, in…Read more
  •  76
    ∗ C pp, qq as a “mutual confirmation” generalization of pp & qq Prpe  hq won’t work Prpp & qq won’t work ∗ C pp, qq, so understood, is not Prpp & qq or Prpq | pq, etc.
  •  29
    With the inclusion of an e ective methodology, this article answers in detail a question that, for a quarter of a century, remained open despite intense study by various researchers. Is the formula XCB = e(x e(e(e(x y) e(z y)) z)) a single axiom for the classical equivalential calculus when the rules of inference consist of detachment (modus ponens) and substitution? Where the function e represents equivalence, this calculus can be axiomatized quite naturally with the formulas (x x), e(e(x y) e(…Read more
  •  94
    Contrastive Bayesianism
    In Martijn Blaauw (ed.), Contrastivism in Philosophy: New Perspectives, Routledge. 2012.
    Bayesianism provides a rich theoretical framework, which lends itself rather naturally to the explication of various “contrastive” and “non-contrastive” concepts. In this (brief) discussion, I will focus on issues involving “contrastivism”, as they arise in some of the recent philosophy of science, epistemology, and cognitive science literature surrounding Bayesian confirmation theory
  •  165
    Likelihoodism, Bayesianism, and relational confirmation
    Synthese 156 (3): 473-489. 2007.
    Likelihoodists and Bayesians seem to have a fundamental disagreement about the proper probabilistic explication of relational (or contrastive) conceptions of evidential support (or confirmation). In this paper, I will survey some recent arguments and results in this area, with an eye toward pinpointing the nexus of the dispute. This will lead, first, to an important shift in the way the debate has been couched, and, second, to an alternative explication of relational support, which is in some se…Read more
  •  164
    Contemporary Bayesian confirmation theorists measure degree of (incremental) confirmation using a variety of non-equivalent relevance measures. As a result, a great many of the arguments surrounding quantitative Bayesian confirmation theory are implicitly sensitive to choice of measure of confirmation. Such arguments are enthymematic, since they tacitly presuppose that certain relevance measures should be used (for various purposes) rather than other relevance measures that have been proposed an…Read more
  •  31
    The principle that every truth is possibly necessary can now be shown to entail that every truth is necessary by a chain of elementary inferences in a perspicuous notation unavailable to Hegel. —Williamson [5, p.
  •  327
    Goodman’s “New Riddle‘
    Journal of Philosophical Logic 37 (6): 613-643. 2008.
    First, a brief historical trace of the developments in confirmation theory leading up to Goodman's infamous "grue" paradox is presented. Then, Goodman's argument is analyzed from both Hempelian and Bayesian perspectives. A guiding analogy is drawn between certain arguments against classical deductive logic, and Goodman's "grue" argument against classical inductive logic. The upshot of this analogy is that the "New Riddle" is not as vexing as many commentators have claimed. Specifically, the anal…Read more
  •  220
    Accuracy, Coherence and Evidence
    Oxford Studies in Epistemology 5 61-96. 2015.
    Taking Joyce’s (1998; 2009) recent argument(s) for probabilism as our point of departure, we propose a new way of grounding formal, synchronic, epistemic coherence requirements for (opinionated) full belief. Our approach yields principled alternatives to deductive consistency, sheds new light on the preface and lottery paradoxes, and reveals novel conceptual connections between alethic and evidential epistemic norms
  •  122
    - In decision theory, an agent is deciding how to value a gamble that results in different outcomes in different states. Each outcome gets a utility value for the agent.
  •  132
    Dutch Book Arguments. B is susceptibility to sure monetary loss (in a certain betting set-up), and F is the formal role played by non-Pr b’s in the DBT and the Converse DBT. Representation Theorem Arguments. B is having preferences that violate some of Savage’s axioms (and/or being unrepresentable as an expected utility maximizer), and F is the formal role played by non-Pr b’s in the RT.
  •  361
    Plantinga’s Probability Arguments Against Evolutionary Naturalism
    Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 79 (2). 1998.
    In Chapter 12 of Warrant and Proper Function, Alvin Plantinga constructs two arguments against evolutionary naturalism, which he construes as a conjunction E&N .The hypothesis E says that “human cognitive faculties arose by way of the mechanisms to which contemporary evolutionary thought directs our attention (p.220).”1 With respect to proposition N , Plantinga (p. 270) says “it isn’t easy to say precisely what naturalism is,” but then adds that “crucial to metaphysical naturalism, of course, is…Read more
  •  45
    Note of the Editors
    with Vincenzo Crupi, Ole Hjortland, and Florian Steinberger
    Erkenntnis 79 (S6): 1-1. 2014.
  •  12
    REVIEWS-An introduction to probability and inductive logic
    with I. Hacking
    Bulletin of Symbolic Logic 9 (4): 506-507. 2003.
  •  42
    To be honest, I have almost nothing critical to say about Jim’s presentation (and this is quite unusual for a cranky analytic philosopher like me!). What Jim has said is all very sensible, and his examples are very well chosen, etc. So, instead of making critical remarks, I will try to expand a little on one of the themes Jim briefly touched upon in his talk: the contextuality of probability.
  •  19
    The talk is mainly defensive. I won’t offer positive accounts of the “paradoxical” cases I will discuss (but, see “Extras”).
  •  46
    Note: This is not an ad hoc change at all. It’s simply the natural thing say here – if one thinks of F as a generalization of classical logical entailment. The extra complexity I had in my original (incorrect) definition of F was there because I was foolishly trying to encode some non-classical, or “relavant” logical structure in F. I now think this is a mistake, and that I should go with the above, classical account of F. Arguments about relevance logic need to be handled in a different way (and …Read more