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19 May 2005 A multilevel exploration of normative reasoning
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Herein, we explore the psychology of deontic reasoning through the presentation of a heterogeneous natural logic combining inference schemas with a preference-based model-theoretic semantics such as those typically found in various formalisms for nonmonotonic reasoning. We conjecture that the heterogeneous approach is a generalization of various other hypotheses concerning deontic reasoning, and provides a robust framework for explaining semantic intricacies which are present in so-called ``deontic paradoxes." As an initial investigation, two theories were tested: The first hypothesis states that people represent an obligation as a conditional statement which explicitly includes the concept of violation, and the other postulates that people not only prefer deontically perfect situations to less-than-perfect situations, but also have preference between these sub-ideal situations. Two sets of experiments were conducted in order to gain some insight regarding these two ideas, and the results show strong evidence supporting our initial intuitions.
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Paul Bello and Yingrui Yang "A multilevel exploration of normative reasoning", Proc. SPIE 5805, Enabling Technologies for Simulation Science IX, (19 May 2005);


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