Misconceptions and ordinary language

&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& FROM CHUCK TUCKER 930515 &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

      I think there have been some misconceptions recently in the
      discussion of modelling, epistemology and instructions. On
      my part I have difficulty with the immediate exchange on the
      net since there are a few times when a sentence of two is
      selected out for examination when the interpretation of the
      sentence should include the other sentences that surround it.
      But, of course, this is very difficult to specify since I
      don't have a way of stating: consider the next five sentences
      as a unit or thought; maybe this could be done with paragraphs
      but I doubt it. But let me clear something up on instructions.

      As I noted: instructions are statements which refer to percep-
      tions; Bill noted them as "descriptions of perceptions to be
      accomplished by unspecified actions" (words in quotes may not
      be verbatim). I have been trying to think of statements
      that I could make to myself the would not be a specification
      of a preception and I can't do it. Awhile ago I was "sealing
      an envelope" and tried to think of what I would say to myself
      to accomplish this act that would not be a perception to
      achieve and I can't do it: "Hold the flap of the envelope with
      the thumb and finger of each hand. Stick your tongue out. Move
      the edge of the flap from one end to the other against your
      tongue. Fold the flap against the envelope and push your finger
      against it from one end to the other." One thing that I noticed
      about these instructions is the they are not very precise but
      I bet that even if I make them more precise in terms of the
      specification of physical movements that I could not avoid
      indicating perceptions: "Stick your tongue out" is a perception
      not a behavior. So it seems try as I may I can not write an
      instruction that does not specify perceptions. Can anyone
      else do it?

      The danger of ordinary language (as all of you know) is related
      to the misinterpretation issue. It was Charles Sanders Pierce
      that said he was a Pragmaticist not a pragmatist since the latter
      word was defined in so many ways (he was particularly irritated
      with William James who was his greatest supporter). Marx was not
      a Marxist. So I think that care must be taken (especially with
      PCT since it is a different view) when translating it into
      ordinary language.

      Tom asked for some advice that might be given by Bob Stewart for
      those who do modelling and I put words in Bob's mouth and said:
      "Continue your work. Work on your problems. Tell us what your
      are doing. Keep focused on your problems. Ignore those silly
      epistemological issues especially if they are introducted by
      Tucker." Tom's post (930513.1659) deserves greater elaboration
      and specification; there is a mongraph not an article in this
      work that has to be made widely known. I hope it will be
      discussed at the CSG meeting.

      I will be out of town this week so I will get back to y'all next