Time out

{from Joel Judd 950210.0830 CST}


Rick, Ed--have your personal e-mail addresses changed in the last couple
of months? I've tried writing both of you this week and both messages
were kicked back to me--but after TWO days. Rick, will you be available
during the week of March 28-April 1?

<Bill Leach>

...and if there were no cars then noone would die in automobile
accidents either.

True. But society has developed a dependance on convenient, fairly rapid
transportation; cars may not have been INEVITABLE, but they're useful in
the present state of affairs. Can we say the same for firearms?

One of the things I fear about a widespread acceptance of PCT is that it
can be used as justification for detrimental behavior just as surely as
behaviorism, but perhaps worse. I can hear someone in court saying:
"You've got to respect me as an autonomous control system."

What is a semi-automatic assault rifle?

As I understand it, it is an automatic assault rifle that has been
modified to fire as fast as you can pull the trigger, but sold that way
to comply with wimpy gun legislation. In many cases, it can be easily
converted back to fully automatic

BTW, I have nothing against guns myself--my dad, uncle and brothers are
or were hunters, and I have have used pistols and rifles on occasion.
My point is, I would be willing to give up a sometimes diversion
permanently, if it would remove an all too easy fatal alternative to
resolving conflict for too many members of society. And that goes for
several things, including vices.


TO: CSG-L INTERNET Any user on the Internet, not at DESE Proj. Box

FROM: JUDDJ DESEINST Joel Judd - DESE - Division of Instruction

DATE: February 10, 1995
SUBJECT: Time out

Sorry to post and run, but I'll be out of town until Tuesday, February


<[Bill Leach 950210.18:45 EST(EDT)]

{Joel Judd 950210.0830 CST}

... cars ...

Not to mention that it is rather easily argued that motor vehicles have
saved many more lives than they have "taken".

One of the things I fear ... PCT ... justification for detrimental ...

Have no fear! If PCT is not used for the purpose there will always be
something else.

I can hear someone in court saying: "You've got to respect me as an
autonomous control system."

I would love to hear that in court. Not only hear it but hear it in a
court room where everyone recognized the real truth and significance of
the statement.

Even though the discussion of "responsibility" raged for awhile, PCT does
not "invalidate" the idea that people can establish a system of rules for
themselves and then hold each other "accountable". What PCT will do is
allow such a system to be internally consistant and help people to
recognize what rules do and do not aid and support the goals. This might
be "lofty thinking" or "idealistic" but any step in the direction of
actually understanding what we do to ourselves and each other is bound to
be a step in the right direction.

I am one that tends to believe that while a knowledge and understanding
of PCT will be an effective tool in the hands of one that wishes to use
(without regard) other for their end, I also believe that the more people
that really understand what PCT is telling us about what we are the less
able will ANYONE be to "harm" another.


From Greg Williams (921017)

Bill Powers (921016.0930)

You appear to be saying that a learned
system can alter not just the states of the organism that I call
critical variables (through indirect effects of its actions), but the
TARGET VALUES (criteria) toward which those critical variables are
controlled and that define zero critical error. So unless you're
junking my proposed reorganizing system, you're adding lines in the
diagram that come from the output of a learned reorganizing system and
go to the reference inputs of my proposed system. Is that what you

I think so. I'm not saying I've got it all mapped out in detail, but I'm
saying it looks like something of this sort is needed to account for
situations such as someone "gladly" killing oneself "for one's country,"
(some) "heroes" getting into (perceived by them as) perilous straits to save
other persons, and someone "choosing death before dishonor." Still, this point
isn't on the mainline of our argument, but a sidetrack which I don't judge of
utmost importance.

I know you're trying to get the house finished and do all the other
things that would keep three ordinary people busy. When things settle
down, perhaps you can get more specific about the model you're
proposing. I don't really want to go on with this until there's a
model to test. What you consider to be data depends on the model
you're using.

Sounds reasonable; I agree. I also think that the models one builds must be
fully informed by genuine data on what is being modeled, in addition to
meeting criteria of internal consistency, elegance, and being informed by data
on what might or might not be analogous to what is being modeled. Otherwise,
the modeler could end up with absurd claims like that made by the
(apocryphal?) aerodynamicist whose model said that bumblebees can't fly. So,
while I attend to other business for a while, I suggest that both of us take
data on human education seriously: some teachers appear to aid the learning of
some students in some subject areas. Both of us should be able to show how our
models explain that data, regardless of what they explain about data on E.

Best wishes,