Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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Qualities, philosophy: quality is an expression of the nature of objects or the form of properties. Today, it is no longer understood as a category but rather as the sum of the distinguishing features of an object. Properties of the objects like their size, mass, etc. count as objective or primary qualities, subjective (secondary) qualities are properties which are settled in the subject, e.g. color. See also quantities, qualia, subjectivity, objectivity, properties, features.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Item Summary Meta data
Norvig I 472
Qualities/AI research/knowledge representation/Norvig/Russell: Qualitative physics is a subfield of knowledge representation concerned specifically with constructing a logical, nonnumeric theory of physical objects and processes.
The term was coined by Johan de Kleer (1975)(1), although the enterprise could be said to have started in Fahlman’s (1974(2)) BUILD, a sophisticated planner for constructing complex towers of blocks. Fahlman discovered in the process of designing it that most of the effort (80%, by his estimate) went into modeling the physics of the blocks world to calculate the stability of various subassemblies of blocks, rather than into planning per se. He sketches a hypothetical naive-physics-like process to explain why young children can solve BUILD-like problems without access to the high-speed floating-point arithmetic used in BUILD’s physical modeling.
Hayes (1985a)(3) uses “histories”—four-dimensional slices of space-time similar to Davidson’s events - to construct a fairly complex naive physics of liquids ((s) Cf. >Events/Davidson).
Hayes was the first to prove that a bath with the plug in will eventually overflow if the tap keeps running and that a person who falls into a lake will get wet all over. Davis (2008)(4) gives an update to the ontology of liquids that describes the pouring of liquids into containers.
De Kleer and Brown (1985)(5), Ken Forbus (1985)(6), and Benjamin Kuipers (1985)(7) independently and almost simultaneously developed systems that can reason about a physical system based on qualitative abstractions of the underlying equations. Qualitative physics soon developed to the point where it became possible to analyze an impressive variety of complex physical systems (Yip, 1991)(8).
Qualitative techniques have been used to construct novel designs for clocks, windshield wipers, and six-legged walkers (Subramanian and Wang, 1994)(9). The collection Readings in Qualitative Reasoning about Physical Systems (Weld and
Norvig I 473
de Kleer, 1990)(10) an encyclopedia article by Kuipers (2001)(11), and a handbook article by Davis (2007)(12) introduce to the field.

1. de Kleer, J. (1975). Qualitative and quantitative knowledge in classical mechanics. Tech. rep. AITR-
352, MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory
2. Fahlman, S. E. (1974). A planning system for robot construction tasks. AIJ, 5(1), 1–49.
3. Hayes, P. J. (1985a). Naive physics I: Ontology for liquids. In Hobbs, J. R. andMoore, R. C. (Eds.), Formal Theories of the Commonsense World, chap. 3, pp. 71–107. Ablex
4. Davis, E. (2008). Pouring liquids: A study in commonsense physical reasoning. AIJ, 172(1540–1578).
5. de Kleer, J. and Brown, J. S. (1985). A qualitative physics based on confluences. In Hobbs, J. R. and
Moore, R. C. (Eds.), Formal Theories of the Commonsense World, chap. 4, pp. 109–183. Ablex.
6. Forbus, K. D. (1985). Qualitative process theory. In Bobrow, D. (Ed.), Qualitative Reasoning About
Physical Systems, pp. 85–186. MIT Press
7. Kuipers, B. J. (1985). Qualitative simulation. In Bobrow, D. (Ed.), Qualitative Reasoning About Physical Systems, pp. 169–203. MIT Press.
8. Yip, K. M.-K. (1991). KAM: A System for Intelligently Guiding Numerical Experimentation by Computer. MIT Press.
9. Subramanian, D. and Wang, E. (1994). Constraintbased kinematic synthesis. In Proc. International
Conference on Qualitative Reasoning, pp. 228–239.
10. Weld, D. S. and de Kleer, J. (1990). Readings in Qualitative Reasoning about Physical Systems. Morgan Kaufmann.
11. Kuipers, B. J. (2001). Qualitative simulation. In Meyers, R. A. (Ed.), Encyclopeida of Physical Science
and Technology. Academic Press.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
AI Research
Norvig I
Peter Norvig
Stuart J. Russell
Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach Upper Saddle River, NJ 2010

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2020-07-05
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