Burghard B. Rieger:

Situations, Topoi, and Dispositions.
On the phenomenological modelling of meaning

(zusammen mit Constantin Thiopoulos) in: Retti, J./Leidlmair, K.(Eds.): 5. Österreichische Artificial-Intelligence-Tagung, Innsbruck-Igls, Tirol; [KI-Informatik-Fachberichte Bd. 208] Berlin/Heidelberg/New York/London/Paris/Tokyo (Springer) 1989, pp. 365-375


We argue that meaning need not be introduced as a presupposition but may instead be derived as a result of semiotic modelling, and that it is the concept of situation which lends itself to a phenomenological interpretation. Owing to Barwise/Perrys (1983) formal conception of it - being (mis)conceived as a duality (i.e. the independent-sign-meaning view) of an information-processing system on the one hand which is confronted on the other hand with an external reality whose accessible fragments are to be recognized as its environment - the notion of situation can well be employed to devise a formal model that captures the semiotic unity (i.e. the contextual-use-meaning view) of any cognitive systems' situational embeddedness constituting its being-in-the-world (In-der Welt-sein) as the primary means of accessability. For a theory of natural language semantics this is tantamount to (re)present a term's meaning by including rather than excluding the way it is used in communicative interaction (Wittgenstein 1958) as specified by discourse situations.

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