User:Ron Chrisley/Proposed/Synthetic phenomenology

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The term "synthetic phenomenology" may refer to: 1) any attempt to characterize the phenomenal states possessed, or modelled, by an artefact; 2) any attempt to use an artefact to assist in the characterisation of phenomenal states (independently of whether such states are possessed by a naturally conscious being or an artefact); or 3) an artefact's characterisation, specification, or representation of its own phenomenal states.



One way to see how the three different kinds of synthetic phenomenology inter-relate is to note that phenomenology is a three-part relation:

Phenomenology is the characterisation of the phenomenal states or experience of some subject X using some means Y, performed by some agent Z.

Kinds 1-3 of synthetic phenomenology, as enumerated at the outset, are obtained by letting an artefact play the roles of X, Y and Z, respectively. This distinguishes synthetic phenomenology from traditional phenomenology which, by contrast, would typically restrict the X and Z roles to humans, and the Y role to language.

(The term "phenomenology" is sometimes used rather loosely, to refer not to the precise specification phenomenal experiences, but to the experiences themselves. That usage of the term will be eschewed here, in favour of the three more technical senses given above, which each involve not just phenomenal states, but the specification, description or characterisation of such.

Type 1: Characterisation of an artefact's phenomenal states

Type 2: Characterisation, by means of an artefact, of phenomenal states

Type 3: Characterisation, on the part of an artefact, of (usually its own) phenomenal states

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