Floating ideas for an airlock near the Moon

Assembly of a new habitable structure near the moon, known as the Gateway, is scheduled to begin in 2023. The international project will allow humans to explore farther than ever before and it brings new opportunities for ...

Surrounded by low achievers—High on positive emotions?

The phenomenon tremendously important for a person's self-perception is referred to as the "Big Fish, Little Pond Effect" (BFLPE). A fish perceives itself as big when it swims in a comparatively small pond. This means: If ...

Extreme light

Across six decades, scientists and engineers have transformed the briefest flash of laser light into ultrafast pulses that pack a powerful punch. Rebecca Pool from ESCI talks to Nobel Laureate, Professor Gerard Mourou, to ...

Unemployment and unhappiness

A new research paper in the International Journal of Economics and Business Research uses log-linear models to study the correlation between happiness, employment and various demographic factors.

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The word concept is used in ordinary language as well as in almost all academic disciplines. Particularly in philosophy, psychology and cognitive sciences the term is much used and much discussed. WordNet defines concept: "conception, construct (an abstract or general idea inferred or derived from specific instances)". However, the meaning of the term concept is much disputed. Philosopher Edouard Machery (2011), for example, argues that theories of concepts in philosophy and in psychology have distinct goals and therefore do not share the same understanding of the term concept. He writes (p. 247):

A concept is typically associated with a corresponding representation in a language or symbology; however, some concepts do not have a linguistic representation, which can make them more difficult to understand depending on a person's native language, such as a single meaning of a term.

There are prevailing theories in contemporary philosophy which attempt to explain the nature of concepts. The representational theory of mind proposes that concepts are mental representations, while the semantic theory of concepts (originating with Frege's distinction between concept and object) holds that they are abstract objects. Ideas are taken to be concepts, although abstract concepts do not necessarily appear to the mind as images, while some ideas appear to. Many philosophers consider concepts to be a fundamental ontological category of being.

The term "concept" is traced back to 1554–60 (Latin conceptum - "something conceived"),[citation needed] but what is today termed "the classical theory of concepts" is the theory of Aristotle on the definition of terms.[citation needed] The meaning of "concept" is explored in mainstream information science, cognitive science, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind. In computer and information science contexts, especially, the term 'concept' is often used in unclear or inconsistent ways.

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