Abstract Level (abstract + level)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Exploiting decision theory concepts within clinical guideline systems: Toward a general approach

Stefania Montani
Supporting therapy selection is a fundamental task for a system for computerized management of clinical guidelines (GL). To this end, decision theory concepts could provide significant advances. In this article, we propose a systematic analysis of the main GL representation primitives and of how they could be related to decision theory concepts. The knowledge representation contribution we provide can be seen as a basis for implementing a decision support tool within any of the systems described in the literature: As a matter of fact, at a sufficiently abstract level, the GL primitives we treat are shared by all of the systems. Such a tool could be adopted when executing a GL on a single patient (in clinical practice) and for simulation purposes. In particular, a decision theory tool based on this analysis is being implemented in the GLARE system. © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Int Syst 21: 585,599, 2006. [source]

Contrasting Role Morality and Professional Morality: Implications for Practice

Kevin Gibson
Investigating role morality is important, since the mentality of role morality may allow agents to believe they can abdicate moral responsibility when acting in a role. This is particularly significant in the literature dealing with professional morality where professionals, because of their special status, may find themselves at odds with their best moral judgments. Here I tell four stories and draw out some distinctions. I conclude that role morality is a genuine and useful distinction. However, I suggest that the purported distinction between role morality and professional morality is over-determined. Therefore, alleged conflicts between the demands of role and profession (such as the different pressures on Pinto designers as employees and as engineers) are not conflicts between different kinds of demands, but rather conflicts arising from divergent roles that most workers will encounter regularly. Another analytical perspective is to look at moral choices at work in terms of power and the ability to bring about change. Finally, I draw the implication that we should stress moral awareness at a fairly abstract level for all employees and reinforce the moral primacy of individual choice. [source]

Information-centered research for large-scale analyses of new information sources

Mike Thelwall
New mass publishing genres, such as blogs and personal home pages provide a rich source of social data that is yet to be fully exploited by the social sciences and humanities. Information-centered research (ICR) not only provides a genuinely new and useful information science research model for this type of data, but can also contribute to the emerging e-research infrastructure. Nevertheless, ICR should not be conducted on a purely abstract level, but should relate to potentially relevant problems. [source]

Exploring comprehensibility and manageability in palliative home care: An interview study of dying cancer patients' informal carers

Anna Milberg
The presence of an informal carer is often a prerequisite for successful palliative home care, and the staff's ability to support informal carers' coping in such situations is important. Recent research has revealed that it is possible to achieve positive psychological states in palliative care despite the burdening situation. As there is a lack of theory-based coping studies, the aim of this study was to describe, within the context of palliative home care, two concepts in Antonovsky's theory of Sense of Coherence: comprehensibility (a perception that the challenge is understood) and manageability (a perception that the resources to cope are available). Tape-recorded semi-structured interviews with 19 informal carers during ongoing palliative home care were transcribed and analysed with a qualitative hermeneutic approach. Elements that facilitated comprehensibility included open information, symbolic information, basic life assumptions and previous knowledge. These were important for creating a congruent inner reality (as opposed to chaos). Resources contributing to manageability dealt with power, support, competence and accessibility, which on a more abstract level resulted in a feeling of togetherness (as opposed to isolation). The findings are discussed in relation to the complexity of communication between staff and carers within palliative care. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Planning of rapid aiming movements and the contingent negative variation: Are movement duration and extent specified independently?

Hartmut Leuthold
Abstract In the present study we investigated motor programming constraints implied by the Generalized Motor Program (GMP) view. A response precuing task was used in which participants performed aiming movements of either short or long duration to either a near or a far target position. Precues provided either no advance information or partial information about extent or duration or fully specified the aiming movement. Reaction time (RT) decreased and late Contingent Negative Variation (CNV) amplitude increased with the amount of advance information. In contrast to predictions of the GMP view, the extent precue led to faster responses and larger CNV amplitude than the duration precue. We conclude that late CNV amplitude reflects independent parameter specification processes at an abstract level at which GMP's motor programming constraints do not apply. [source]

A test framework for CORBA* component model-based software systems

Harold J. Batteram
In this paper we present a framework for testing software systems that is based on the Common Object Request Broker Architecture (CORBA*) component model (CCM) standard. An important aspect of CCM-based systems is that they must be verifiable and testable at the abstract level of their design, regardless of the language chosen to implement the component. Component-based systems allow the development and testing of components to be divided among development groups working in parallel. However, dependencies between separately developed components may cause delays in testing. The test framework we present allows for the automatic generation,based on their external specification,of reactor components that testers can use as substitutes for components their components depend on, but that have not yet been developed. The test components generated can respond to an invocation interactively or automatically by means of a test script. The framework can also visualize interactions between components as they flow through a distributed system, and can compare runtime interactions with design specifications. The approach to testing that we describe was first explored in the distributed software component (DSC) framework developed as part of the FRIENDS project, and has been used successfully in the WINMAN European research project, which deals with network management applications. The test framework has now been extended and adapted for the CCM architecture. It is currently implemented as part of the COACH research project, which is sponsored by the European Commission. © 2003 Lucent Technologies Inc. [source]

They Do What They Are Told to Do: The Influence of Instruction on (Chess) Expert Perception,Commentary on Linhares and Brum (2007)

Merim Bilali
Abstract Linhares and Brum (2007) argue that they provide evidence for analogy as the main principle behind experts' acquisition of perceptual knowledge. However, the methodology they used,asking players to pair positions using abstract similarity,raises the possibility that the task reflects more the effect of directional instructions than the principles underlying the acquisition of knowledge. Here we replicate and extend Linhares and Brum's experiment and show that the matching task they used is inadequate for drawing any conclusions about the nature of experts' perception. When expert chess players were instructed to match problems based on similarities at the abstract level (analogy), they produced more abstract pairs than pairs based on concrete similarity. However, the same experts produced more concrete pairs than abstract ones when instructed to match the problems based on concrete similarity. Asking experts to match problems using explicit instructions is not an appropriate way to show the importance of either analogy or similarity in the acquisition of expert knowledge. Experts simply do what they are told to do. [source]

Architectural Methodology Based on Intentional Configuration of Behaviors

François Michaud
Intelligence has been an object of study for a long time. Different architectures try to capture and reproduce these aspects into artificial systems (or agents), but there is still no agreement on how to integrate them into a general framework. With this objective in mind, we propose an architectural methodology based on the idea of intentional configuration of behaviors. Behavior-producing modules are used as basic control components that are selected and modified dynamically according to the intentions of the agent. These intentions are influenced by the situation perceived, knowledge about the world, and internal variables that monitor the state of the agent. The architectural methodology preserves the emergence of functionality associated with the behavior-based paradigm in the more abstract levels involved in configuring the behaviors. Validation of this architecture is done using a simulated world for mobile robots, in which the agent must deal with various goals such as managing its energy and its well-being, finding targets, and acquiring knowledge about its environment. Fuzzy logic, a topologic map learning algorithm, and activation variables with a propagation mechanism are used to implement the architecture for this agent. [source]

Making a mark: two thousand years of ecology, economy and worldview

Ian Simmons
Abstract We can make a history of the world as an ecological history of an empirical nature. But parallelling that is the history of human thought about nature. The two interact at both pragmatic and abstract levels but in essence the outcome is unpredictable and more akin to chaos theory than to environmental or technological determinism. So the pursuit of either environmentalist or cornucopian Utopias seems not only doomed to failure but likely to cause destruction along the way; a step by step improvisatory strategy seems the best we can do. [source]