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The history and philosophy of biosignatures

Dunér, David LU (2019) In Advances in Astrobiology and Biogeophysics p.303-338
Abstract

This chapter examines the human search, understanding, and interpretation of biosignatures. It deals with four epistemological issues in the search for signs of life in outer space: (1) conceptualization, how we form concepts of life in astrobiology, how we define and categorize things, and the relation between our concepts and our knowledge of the world; (2) analogy, how we see similarities between things, and with inductive, analogical reasoning go from what we know to what we do not know, from the only example of life here on Earth, to possible extraterrestrial life; (3) perception, how we interpret what our senses convey in our search for biosignatures, how the information we get from the surrounding world is processed in our minds;... (More)

This chapter examines the human search, understanding, and interpretation of biosignatures. It deals with four epistemological issues in the search for signs of life in outer space: (1) conceptualization, how we form concepts of life in astrobiology, how we define and categorize things, and the relation between our concepts and our knowledge of the world; (2) analogy, how we see similarities between things, and with inductive, analogical reasoning go from what we know to what we do not know, from the only example of life here on Earth, to possible extraterrestrial life; (3) perception, how we interpret what our senses convey in our search for biosignatures, how the information we get from the surrounding world is processed in our minds; and (4) the semiotics of biosignatures, how we, as interpreters, establish connections between things, between the expression (the biosignature) and the content (the living organism) in various forms of semiosis, as icons, indices, and symbols of life. In all, it is about how we get access to the world, and how we interpret and understand it, for achieving a well-grounded knowledge about the living Universe.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding
publication status
published
subject
in
Advances in Astrobiology and Biogeophysics
pages
36 pages
publisher
Springer Verlag
external identifiers
  • scopus:85054416155
ISSN
1613-1851
1610-8957
ISBN
978-3-319-96175-0
978-3-319-96174-3
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-96175-0_15
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
a86923e4-4e40-47c4-b379-53663f1f2420
date added to LUP
2018-10-26 12:52:20
date last changed
2018-11-05 10:28:59
@inbook{a86923e4-4e40-47c4-b379-53663f1f2420,
  abstract     = {<p>This chapter examines the human search, understanding, and interpretation of biosignatures. It deals with four epistemological issues in the search for signs of life in outer space: (1) conceptualization, how we form concepts of life in astrobiology, how we define and categorize things, and the relation between our concepts and our knowledge of the world; (2) analogy, how we see similarities between things, and with inductive, analogical reasoning go from what we know to what we do not know, from the only example of life here on Earth, to possible extraterrestrial life; (3) perception, how we interpret what our senses convey in our search for biosignatures, how the information we get from the surrounding world is processed in our minds; and (4) the semiotics of biosignatures, how we, as interpreters, establish connections between things, between the expression (the biosignature) and the content (the living organism) in various forms of semiosis, as icons, indices, and symbols of life. In all, it is about how we get access to the world, and how we interpret and understand it, for achieving a well-grounded knowledge about the living Universe.</p>},
  author       = {Dunér, David},
  isbn         = {978-3-319-96175-0},
  issn         = {1613-1851},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {303--338},
  publisher    = {Springer Verlag},
  series       = {Advances in Astrobiology and Biogeophysics},
  title        = {The history and philosophy of biosignatures},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-96175-0_15},
  year         = {2019},
}