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When a Man Falls on Google Street View:

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Transcript of When a Man Falls on Google Street View:

Interpreting Quasi-Testimony from Instruments
as a Material Hermeneutical Practice
The Graduate Program in Science, Technology and Society
Bar-Ilan University
Israel
When a Man Falls
on Google Street View:
Following Verbeek’s advice , we expand the theoretical background of material hermeneutics.

We engage with the debate in the epistemology of testimony on whether instruments, and not just humans, can offer testimony.
We argue that instruments can offer quasi testimony, which humans interpret by norm-governed extraction of symbolic meaning; namely, through material hermeneutics.

We illustrate our argument with the example of the Google-Street-View photo Fallen Man .
We suggest that connecting post-phenomenology with the epistemology of testimony allows for richer analyses of human-technology interaction and technological mediation, leading to a unified philosophical framework of knowledge from instruments.
See, e.g., Ihde, Don. 1999. Expanding Hermeneutics: Visualism in Science. Northwestern University Press; 2009. Postphenomenology and Technoscience: The Peking University Lectures, pp. 16, 63-90. SUNY Press; 2012. Multistabilities: Experimental Phenomenology, p. 164. SUNY Press; 2015. Acoustic Technics (Postphenomenology and the Philosophy of Technology), pp. 22-23. Lexington Books.
See, e.g., Lipton, Peter. 2004. Inference to the Best Explanation, 2nd ed. London: Routledge; Chakravartty, Anjan. 2011. “Scientific Realism”, In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ed. Edward N. Zalta; Psillos, Sthathis. 2006. “Scientific Realism”, In Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd ed., Vol. 8, ed. D. M. Borchert, 688‐694. Detroit: Macmillan; Papineau, David (ed.). 1996. Philosophy of Science. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Verbeek, Peter-Paul. 2003. “Material Hermeneutics”, Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology 6(3): 181-184.
Fallen Man, a photo captured by Google Street View, is discussed in: Milner, Greg. 2016. Pinpoint: How GPS is Changing Our World, pp. 235-238. London: Granta.
Postphenomenology - criticism
from within
the outside
ignore
Various scientific techniques
(e.g. X-ray diffraction,
radiocarbon dating,
and spectrographs)
How do Analytic Epistemologists analyze
Knowledge from Instruments?
Knowledge ~= Justified, True Belief
Mere perception (or Inferential beliefs)
Reliability of Instruments
"A subject
S
knows that
P
through instrument
I
, iff [...]"
Sense organs that detect an instrument’s output


Mere perception or Inferential beliefs
A causal chain running from a specimen’s sensory properties to the instrument’s output
Record, Isaac. 2009. “Daniel Rothbart, Philosophical Instruments: Minds and Tools at Work”,
Spontaneous Generations: A Journal for the History and Philosophy of Science
3(1): 233-235.
Reliability of Instruments
Epistemology of measurements,
calibration, etc.
Chang, Hasok, and Cartwright, Nancy. 2014 [2008]. “Measurement”, In The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Science, 2nd edition. Martin Curd & Stathis Psillos (Eds.), Routledge: London and New York, pp. 411-419.
Tal, Eran. 2013. “Old and New Problems in Philosophy of Measurement”, Philosophical Compass 8(12): 1159-1173.
Tal, Eran. 2015. “Measurement in Science”, In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Edward N. Zalta (ed.)

Correctness
conditions for measurement
, and
Coordination between
theoretical quantity concepts
and
empirical measurement
procedures
Conditions for relying on instruments
Individual OR social
Philosophy of Science
Epistemology
Traditional approaches to
knowledge from instruments
Trust & Testimony
Approach

Theories of
Trust

(i) Influences on cognitive abilities to use, understand, and avoid error when using instruments
Active Externalism
in social epistemology (Palermos & Pritchard 2013; Palermos 2015)
Distributed Cognition
(Hutchins 1995), and
Extended Hypothesis
(Clark 2007)
Cognitive processes extends beyond the biological limitations
Clark, Andy. 2007. "Curing Cognitive Hiccups: A Defense of the Extended Mind", Journal of Philosophy 104: 163-192.
Hutchins, Edwin. 1995. Cognition in the Wild. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Meijers, Anthonie W. M. & Marc J. De Vries. 2009. “Technological Knowledge”, In A Companion to the Philosophy of Technology, Olsen, J.K.B., Pedersen, S.A. and Hendricks, V.F. (eds). Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, pp. 70-74.
Palermos, Orestis and Duncan Pritchard. 2013. “Extended Knowledge and Social Epistemology”, Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 2 (8): 105-120.
Palermos, S. Orestis. 2015. "Active Externalism, Virtue Reliabilism and Scientific Knowledge", Synthese: 1-32.
(ii) Extends the subject's cognition to her surroundings
Technological knowledge plays a role in the justification for trustworthiness of instruments:
"knowledge that is involved in the designing, making and using of technical artifacts and systems"
(Meijers & De Vries 2009)
Lehrer
Sosa
Millar
Reliability
Evaluation Model of Instrumental Knowledge
The subject must be able to defend the acceptance of P against possible objections
Basis for the evaluation of the belief that the instrument is trustworthy
a subject has an indication that the instrument indicates the truth outright
Knowledge from indicators
grounded in the notion of a subject's successfully exercising her recognitional abilities: The reliability of the cognitive abilities to acquire indications
Lehrer, Keith. 1995. “Knowledge and the Trustworthiness of Instruments”, The Monist 78(2): 156 170.
Sosa, Ernest. 2006. "Knowledge: Instrumental and Testimonial", In The Epistemology of Testimony, J. Lackey and E. Sosa (eds.). Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 116-123.
Millar, Alan. 2009. "Knowledge and Recognition", In The Nature and Value of Knowledge: Three Investigations, Duncan Pritchard, Alan Millar, and Adrian Haddock (eds.). Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 91-190.
Individual

justifications for
relying on instruments
Nickel
et al.
(2010)
Nickel (2013)
Trust is given by users to the people who are behind the technologies or socio-technical systems
Not only trusting in people who are behind the technologies, but also in social institutions
e.g.: A failure to perform will lead to an effective sanction by institutional structures
Social Assurance for the Trustworthiness of Instruments
Nickel, Philip J., Franssen, Maarten, & Kroes, Peter. 2010. "Can We Make Sense of the Notion of Trustworthy Technology?", Knowledge, Technology & Policy 23(3-4): 429-444.
Nickel, Philip. J. 2013. "Trust in Technological Systems", In Norms in Technology, M. J. de Vries et al. (eds.). Dordrecht: Springer, pp. 223-237.

(reduction)
P
Algorithm
Estelle
P
P
was initiated by a non-human
P[Mediated (I)]
Instrument
I
+
P[Initiate (I)]
P
Frank knows that
P
Technology
-based beliefs
P
Testimony
-based beliefs
a
unified analytic framework
that uses social epistemic concepts of
trust
and
testimony
Philosophy
Trust & Testimony
Approach
Solution:
Quasi-
Testimony conditions
Orthodox views
Non-Orthodox views
only persons participate
in the act of testimony
Advocated,
inter alia
,
by
sociologists of knowledge
(e.g. Collins & Kusch 1998; Bloor 1999; Collins 2010),
and by
most philosophical accounts of testimony
(Coady 1992, 268; Lackey 2008, 189).
Only testimony-based beliefs
originate from epistemic subjects
who are
"susceptible to full-blooded normative assessment"
(Goldberg 2012, 191).
It is possible to receive
testimony from instruments
Defended mostly by proponents of Actor-Network Theory, primarily Latour, who claims that testimonies of instruments may be
“even more reliable than [those of] ordinary mortals” (1993, 23).
Also advocated, on different grounds, by a minority of philosophers
(e.g. Humphreys 2009).
Recorded phone message (Green 2006, 27; 2008)
Bloor, David. 1999. "Anti-Latour", Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science 30(1): 81-112.
Coady, C. Anthony. J. 1992. Testimony: A Philosophical Study. Oxford University Press.
Collins, Harry M, & Kusch, Martin. 1999. The Shape of Actions: What Humans and Machines Can Do. Cambridge: MIT Press.
Collins, Harry M. 2010. “Humans not instruments”, Spontaneous Generations: A Journal for the History and Philosophy of Science 4(1): 138-147.
Goldberg, Sanford C. 2012. "Epistemic extendedness, testimony, and the epistemology of instrument-based belief", Philosophical Explorations: An International Journal for the Philosophy of Mind and Action 15(2): 181-197.
Kusch, Martin. 2002. Knowledge by Agreement: The Programme of Communitarian Epistemology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Lackey, Jennifer. 2008. Learning from Words: Testimony as a Source of Knowledge. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Humphreys, Paul. 2009. “Network Epistemology”, Episteme 6(2): 221-229.
Latour, Bruno. 1993. We Have Never Been Modern. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Green, Christopher R. 2006. The Epistemic Parity of Testimony, Memory, and Perception. Ph.D. dissertation, University of Notre Dame.
Green, Christopher R. 2008. “The Epistemology of Testimony”, In Internet Encyclopaedia of Philosophy, (eds.) B. Dowden & J. Fieser

Orthodox views of trust, as reduced
to humans behind the technologies
Problem for traditional analytic epistemology:
Testimony
&
Trust
= human concepts
Anthropomorphizing non-humans
Examples
Example
Frank knows that P
P
George knows that P
P
Knowledge can only travel along uninterrupted chains of knowers
Generative
Theories of Testimonial Knowledge and Justification
Frank knows that P
P
Estelle does not believe that P
George generated the knowledge
that P
P
a hearer can acquire testimonial knowledge from
a speaker who herself lacks knowledge
Prima facie
, a new possibility arises:

A hearer can acquire
testimonial knowledge
from
an instrument
Theories of
Testimonial Knowledge

Transmission
Theories of Testimonial Knowledge and Justification
Estelle knows
that P
Knowledge & Justification
from instruments

Carter, J. Adam, and Nickel, Philip J. 2014. ”On Testimony and Transmission”, Episteme 11(02): 145-155.
Lackey, Jennifer. 2008. Learning from Words: Testimony as a Source of Knowledge. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Kusch, Martin. 2002. Knowledge by Agreement: The Programme of Communitarian Epistemology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

these techniques’
non-textual
outputs require critical interpretation, without which scientists couldn’t reconstruct Otzi’s history.
1999. Expanding Hermeneutics: Visualism in Science. Northwestern University Press.
2009. Postphenomenology and Technoscience: The Peking University Lectures, pp. 16, 63-90. SUNY Press.
2012. Multistabilities: Experimental Phenomenology, p. 164. SUNY Press.
2015. Acoustic Technics (Postphenomenology and the Philosophy of Technology), pp. 22-23. Lexington Books.
Don Ihde
By Thilo Parg - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0
https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=35621968
Ötzi the Iceman
Embodied
Material Hermeneutical
practices
Various scientific techniques
(e.g. X-ray diffraction,
radiocarbon dating,
and spectrographs)
Explanatory reasoning
Analytic Philosophers of Science
By Thilo Parg - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0
https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=35621968
Ötzi the Iceman
Inference to the Best Explanation
(IBE, or Abduction)
See, e.g.:
Lipton, Peter. 2004. Inference to the Best Explanation, 2nd ed. London: Routledge.
Chakravartty, Anjan. 2011. “Scientific Realism”, In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ed. Edward N. Zalta.
Psillos, Sthathis. 2006. “Scientific Realism”, In Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd ed., Vol. 8, ed. D. M. Borchert, 688-694. Detroit: Macmillan.
Papineau, David (ed.). 1996. Philosophy of Science. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
superfluous
postphenomenology's characterization of
material hermeneutics
IBE
leaves
Various scientific techniques
(e.g. X-ray diffraction,
radiocarbon dating,
and spectrographs)
these techniques’ non-textual outputs require critical interpretation, without which scientists couldn’t reconstruct Otzi’s history.
1999. Expanding Hermeneutics: Visualism in Science. Northwestern University Press.
2009. Postphenomenology and Technoscience: The Peking University Lectures, pp. 16, 63-90. SUNY Press.
2012. Multistabilities: Experimental Phenomenology, p. 164. SUNY Press.
2015. Acoustic Technics (Postphenomenology and the Philosophy of Technology), pp. 22-23. Lexington Books.
Don Ihde
By Thilo Parg - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0
https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=35621968
Ötzi the Iceman
Embodied
Material Hermeneutical
practices
Various scientific techniques
(e.g. X-ray diffraction,
radiocarbon dating,
and spectrographs)
Explanatory reasoning
Analytic Philosophers of Science
By Thilo Parg - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0
https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=35621968
Ötzi the Iceman
Inference to the Best Explanation
(IBE, or Abduction)
See, e.g.:
Lipton, Peter. 2004. Inference to the Best Explanation, 2nd ed. London: Routledge.
Chakravartty, Anjan. 2011. “Scientific Realism”, In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ed. Edward N. Zalta.
Psillos, Sthathis. 2006. “Scientific Realism”, In Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd ed., Vol. 8, ed. D. M. Borchert, 688-694. Detroit: Macmillan.
Papineau, David (ed.). 1996. Philosophy of Science. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
postphenomenology's characterization of
material hermeneutics
IBE
and
must involve extracting or deciphering symbolic or semiotic meaning, which is not the case in Otzi’s example
The Argument
To follow Verbeek’s advice of expanding the theoretical background of material hermeneutics
Philosophical Approach to
knowledge from instruments
Material Hermeneutics
IN BRIEF
Instruments can offer quasi-testimony, which humans interpret by norm-governed extraction of symbolic meaning; namely, through
material hermeneutics
.

Illustration of the Argument
Ori Freiman
ori.freiman@biu.ac.il
Boaz Miller
boaz.miller@biu.ac.il
17 November 2016
University of Twente
Ori Freiman & Boaz Miller When a Man Falls on Google Street View
The Structure of the Presentation
1.1. Embodied
Material Hermeneutical
practices
1.2. The alternative of
Inference to the Best Explanation
2.
Expanding
Material Hermeneutics
2.1. Philosophical Approach to
Knowledge from Instruments
2.2. The example of Google Street View's
Falling Man
1. Introduction
2.1.1. The Trust and Testimony Approach
Ori Freiman & Boaz Miller 1. INTRODUCTION When a Man Falls on Google Street View
Quasi-Testimony
of instruments
as a way to overtake this impasse debate
A (non-gettiered) human subject
S
obtains knowledge that
P
from instrument
I
by quasi-testimony iff:
(i)
P
is not a result of mere measurement,
(ii)
P
is considered generative knowledge which no other
human subject who knows that
P
was directly involved,
(iii)
P
is true, and
(iv)
S
has justification to trust in
I
.

Justification for the Trustworthiness of a Quasi-Testifier (
Justified Trust
):


(i)
S
has a trustworthy basis for the evaluation of the belief that
P
; and
(ii) is able to defend the acceptance of
P
against possible objections.
(iii)
S
has an indication that
I
indicates the truth outright, and accepts that indication by successfully exercising her recognitional abilities.

(iv) Social Institutions assure the reliability of
I
.

(v)
S
has technological knowledge regarding
I
’s internal processes for better successfully exercising her own cognitive abilities in recognizing its indicators, understand and avoid errors when using
I
.

https://www.google.co.il/maps/@40.7438587,-73.9834418,3a,45y,334.96h,79.25t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1s4jll2qivDLUZedxgU0Y6Ug!2e0!5s20090501T000000!7i13312!8i6656!6m1!1e1?hl=en

Milner, Greg. 2016.
Pinpoint: How GPS Is Changing Technology, Culture,
and Our Minds
. W. W. Norton & Company.
Instruments' values & time stamps: quasi-testimony
By Thilo Parg - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0
https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=35621968
Ötzi the Iceman
Fallen Man
Scientists use (norm-governed) instruments
Interpreting Quasi-Testimony from Instruments
as a Material Hermeneutical Practice

The Graduate Program in Science, Technology and Society
Bar-Ilan University
Israel
When a Man Falls
on Google Street View:

Ori Freiman
ori.freiman@biu.ac.il
Boaz Miller
boaz.miller@biu.ac.il
17 November 2016
University of Twente
Thank you
to tell the story of Otzi
otzi+instruments - mere measurement. lacking the "intention" of the technological system to convey the information. mere measurement - watching instruments' display. testimony - propositions aquired through interaction

fallen man+gsv - testimony



measurement, which focuses on the correctness conditions for measurement and the coordination between theoretical quantity concepts and the empirical measurement procedures
(Chang & Cartwright 2014 [2008]; Tal 2013, 2015), my focus is on the perceptual acquisition of knowledge when measuring takes place. I will analyze the conditions for the acquisition of knowledge and justified belief from technological testimony, drawing a distinction from the acquisition of knowledge or justified belief from mere instrumental measurement, and from the acquisition of knowledge or justified belief from human testimony.


Lackey, J. 2008. Learning from words. p. 27
not simply a source of belief, but has

testimony as an intentional act on the part

of the speaker and testimony as a source of belief or knowledge for the hearer.
s-testimony h-testimony

it requires merely that the speaker intend

to express communicable content.
Tal, Eran. 2013. “Old and New Problems in Philosophy of Measurement”, Philosophical

Compass 8(12): 1159-1173.

Tal, Eran. 2015. “Measurement in Science”, in The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy,

Edward N. Zalta (ed.)

http://plato.stanford.edu/archives/sum2015/entries/measurement-science


Chang, Hasok, and Cartwright, Nancy. 2014 [2008]. “Measurement”, in The Routledge

Companion to Philosophy of Science, 2nd edition. Martin Curd & Stathis Psillos (Eds.),

Routledge: London and New York, pp. 411-419.

or
communicate
empirical measurement procedures
might benefit from each other's methodologies
Recipient and Giver both
intend to communicate
(Following Lackey 2008)
Lackey, J. (2008).
Learning from words: Testimony as a source of knowledge
. Oxford University Press.
Testimony
Mere Measurement
Reliability of Instruments
Epistemology of measurements,
calibration, etc.
Chang, Hasok, and Cartwright, Nancy. 2014 [2008]. “Measurement”, In The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Science, 2nd edition. Martin Curd & Stathis Psillos (Eds.), Routledge: London and New York, pp. 411-419.
Tal, Eran. 2013. “Old and New Problems in Philosophy of Measurement”, Philosophical Compass 8(12): 1159-1173.
Tal, Eran. 2015. “Measurement in Science”, In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Edward N. Zalta (ed.)

Correctness
conditions for measurement
, and
Coordination between
theoretical quantity concepts
and
empirical measurement
procedures
Philosophy of Science
Involves Language
propositions?
GSV users use (norm-govered) instruments to tell the story of Fallen Man
Otzi
Instruments
Scientists
MH
Fallen Man
GSV
Users
Quasi-
Testimony
Textual
Non-textual
Mere Measurement
Quasi-Testimony
+
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