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Andrew James Latham
University of Sydney
  1. An Empirical Investigation of Purported Passage Phenomenology.Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophy.
    It has widely been assumed, by philosophers, that most people unambiguously have a phenomenology as of time passing, and that this is a datum that philosophical theories about both the nature of time, and experience, must accommodate. Moreover, it has been assumed that the greater the extent to which people have said phenomenology, the more likely they are to endorse a dynamical theory of time. This paper is the first to empirically test these assumptions. We found that, on average, participants (...)
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  2.  80
    Quantum Gravity, Timelessness, and the Folk Concept of Time.Andrew James Latham & Kristie Miller - forthcoming - Synthese:1-26.
    What it would take to vindicate folk temporal error theory? This question is significant against a backdrop of new views in quantum gravity—so-called timeless physical theories—that claim to eliminate time by eliminating a one-dimensional substructure of ordered temporal instants. Ought we to conclude that if these views are correct, nothing satisfies the folk concept of time and hence that folk temporal error theory is true? In light of evidence we gathered, we argue that physical theories that entirely eliminate an ordered (...)
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  3.  54
    An Empirical Investigation of the Role of Direction in Our Concept of Time.Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Acta Analytica:1-23.
    This paper empirically investigates one aspect of the folk concept of time (amongst US residents), by testing how the presence or absence of directedness impacts judgements about whether there is time in a world. Experiment 1 found that dynamists (those who think the actual world contains an A-series), showed significantly higher levels of agreement that there is time in dynamically directed (growing block) worlds than in non-dynamical non-directed (C-theory) worlds. Comparing our results to those of Latham et al. (ms), we (...)
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  4. Is Our Naïve Theory of Time Dynamical?Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Synthese.
    We investigated, experimentally, the contention that the folk view, or naïve theory, of time, amongst the population we investigated (i.e. U.S. residents) is dynamical. We found that amongst that population, (i) ~70% have an extant theory of time (the theory they deploy after some reflection, whether it be naïve or sophisticated) that is more similar to a dynamical than a non-dynamical theory, and (ii) ~70% of those who deploy a naïve theory of time (the theory that have on the basis (...)
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  5.  95
    Judgements of Metaphysical Explanations Are Context Sensitive.Andrew James Latham & Kristie Miller - manuscript
    Empirical investigation of the conditions under which people prefer, or disprefer, causal explanation, has suggested to many that our judgements about what causally explains what are context sensitive in a number of ways. This has led many to suppose that whether or not a causal explanation obtains depends on various contextual factors, and that said explanations can obtain in one context, and not in another: they are both subjective and agent-relative. Surprisingly, most accounts of metaphysical explanation suppose there to be (...)
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  6.  22
    On Preferring That Overall, Things Are Worse: Future-Bias and Unequal Payoffs.Preston Greene, Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - manuscript
    Philosophers working on time-biases assume that people are hedonically biased toward the future. A hedonically future-biased agent prefers pleasurable experiences to be future instead of past, and painful experiences to be past instead of future. Philosophers further predict that this bias is strong enough to apply to unequal payoffs: people often prefer less pleasurable future experiences to more pleasurable past ones, and more painful past experiences to less painful future ones. In addition, philosophers have predicted that future-bias is restricted to (...)
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  7. Temporal Phenomenology: Phenomenological Illusion Versus Cognitive Error.Kristie Miller, Alex Holcombe & Andrew James Latham - 2020 - Synthese 197 (2):751-771.
    Temporal non-dynamists hold that there is no temporal passage, but concede that many of us judge that it seems as though time passes. Phenomenal Illusionists suppose that things do seem this way, even though things are not this way. They attempt to explain how it is that we are subject to a pervasive phenomenal illusion. More recently, Cognitive Error Theorists have argued that our experiences do not seem that way; rather, we are subject to an error that leads us mistakenly (...)
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  8. Alien Worlds, Alien Laws, and the Humean Conceivability Argument.Lok‐Chi Chan, David Braddon‐Mitchell & Andrew James Latham - 2020 - Ratio 33 (1):1-13.
    Monism is our name for a range of views according to which the connection between dispositions and their categorical bases is intimate and necessary, or on which there are no categorical bases at all. In contrast, Dualist views hold that the connection between dispositions and their categorical bases is distant and contingent. This paper is a defence of Monism against an influential conceivability argument in favour of Dualism. The argument suggests that the apparent possibility of causal behaviour coming apart from (...)
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  9. Do the Folk Represent Time as Essentially Dynamical?Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - manuscript
    Recent research (Latham, Miller and Norton, forthcoming) reveals that a majority of people represent actual time as dynamical. But do they, as suggested by McTaggart and Gödel, represent time as essentially dynamical? This paper distinguishes three interrelated questions. We ask (a) whether the folk representation of time is sensitive or insensitive: i.e., does what satisfies the folk representation of time in counterfactual worlds depend on what satisfies it actually—sensitive—or does is not depend on what satisfies it actually—insensitive, and (b) do (...)
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  10. Indirect Compatibilism.Andrew James Latham - 2019 - Dissertation, University of Sydney
    In this thesis, I will defend a new kind of compatibilist account of free action, indirect conscious control compatibilism (or indirect compatibilism for short), and argue that some of our actions are free according to it. My argument has three components, and involves the development of a brand new tool for experimental philosophy, and the use of cognitive neuroscience. The first component of the argument shows that compatibilism (of some kind) is a conceptual truth. Contrary to the current orthodoxy in (...)
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  11. The Conceptual Impossibility of Free Will Error Theory.Andrew James Latham - 2019 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 15 (2):99-120.
    This paper argues for a view of free will that I will call the conceptual impossibility of the truth of free will error theory - the conceptual impossibility thesis. I will argue that given the concept of free will we in fact deploy, it is impossible for our free will judgements - judgements regarding whether some action is free or not - to be systematically false. Since we do judge many of our actions to be free, it follows from the (...)
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  12.  64
    Investigating Non-Philosophers’ Judgements About the Asymmetry of Metaphysical Explanation.Andrew James Latham & Kristie Miller - manuscript
    It is often supposed that metaphysical explanation is asymmetric: that for all x and y, if x metaphysically explains y, then y does not metaphysically explain x. Even amongst those who hold that metaphysical explanation is not asymmetric, but nonsymmetric, it is assumed that a relatively small number of particular explanations are symmetric: by and large, if x metaphysically explains y, then y does not metaphysically explain x. Both parties agree that as a matter of fact we at least typically (...)
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  13.  18
    Future Bias in Action: Does the Past Matter More When You Can Affect It?Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller, James Norton & Christian Tarsney - forthcoming - Synthese.
    Philosophers have long noted, and empirical psychology has lately confirmed, that most people are ‘biased toward the future’: we prefer to have positive experiences in the future, and negative experiences in the past. At least two explanations have been offered for this bias: (i) belief in temporal passage (or related theses in temporal metaphysics) and (ii) the practical irrelevance of the past resulting from our inability to influence past events. We set out to test the latter explanation. In a large (...)
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  14.  26
    Are the Folk Functionalists About Time?Andrew James Latham & Kristie Miller - manuscript
    This paper empirically investigates the contention that the folk concept of time is a functional concept: a concept according to which time is (and perhaps necessarily so) whatever actually plays certain functional roles. This hypothesis could explain why, in previous research, surprisingly large percentages of participants judge that there is time worlds that contain no one-dimensional substructure of ordered instants. If it seems to participants that even in those worlds certain functional roles are played, then this could explain why they (...)
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  15. Simon-Task Reveals Balanced Visuomotor Control in Experienced Video-Game Players.Andrew James Latham, Christine Westermann, Lucy L. M. Patston, Nathan A. Ryckman & Lynette J. Tippett - 2019 - Journal of Cognitive Enhancement 3 (1):104-110.
    Both short and long-term video-game play may result in superior performance on visual and attentional tasks. To further these findings, we compared the performance of experienced male video-game players (VGPs) and non-VGPs on a Simon-task. Experienced-VGPs began playing before the age of 10, had a minimum of 8 years of experience and a minimum play time of over 20 h per week over the past 6 months. Our results reveal a significantly reduced Simon-effect in experienced-VGPs relative to non-VGPs. However, this (...)
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  16. Are Big Gods a Big Deal in the Emergence of Big Groups?Quentin D. Atkinson, Andrew James Latham & Joseph Watts - 2015 - Religion, Brain and Behavior 5 (4):266-274.
    In Big Gods, Norenzayan (2013) presents the most comprehensive treatment yet of the Big Gods question. The book is a commendable attempt to synthesize the rapidly growing body of survey and experimental research on prosocial effects of religious primes together with cross-cultural data on the distribution of Big Gods. There are, however, a number of problems with the current cross-cultural evidence that weaken support for a causal link between big societies and certain types of Big Gods. Here we attempt to (...)
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  17. Time in a One‐Instant World.Andrew James Latham & Kristie Miller - forthcoming - Ratio.
    Many philosophers hold that ‘one-instant worlds’—worlds that contain a single instant—fail to contain time. We experimentally investigate whether these worlds satisfy the folk concept of time. We found that ~50% of participants hold that there is time in such worlds. We argue that this suggests one of two possibilities. First, the population disagree about whether at least one of the A-, B-, or C-series is necessary for time, with there being a substantial sub-population for whom the presence of neither an (...)
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  18. Four Meta-Methods for the Study of Qualia.Lok-Chi Chan & Andrew James Latham - 2019 - Erkenntnis 84 (1):145-167.
    In this paper, we describe four broad ‘meta-methods’ employed in scientific and philosophical research of qualia. These are the theory-centred metamethod, the property-centred meta-method, the argument-centred meta-method, and the event-centred meta-method. Broadly speaking, the theory-centred meta-method is interested in the role of qualia as some theoretical entities picked out by our folk psychological theories; the property-centred meta-method is interested in some metaphysical properties of qualia that we immediately observe through introspection ; the argument-centred meta-method is interested in the role of (...)
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  19. Hedonic and Non-Hedonic Bias Towards the Future.Preston Greene, Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy:1-16.
    It has widely been assumed, by philosophers, that our first-person preferences regarding pleasurable and painful experiences exhibit a bias toward the future (positive and negative hedonic future-bias), and that our preferences regarding non-hedonic events (both positive and negative) exhibit no such bias (non-hedonic time-neutrality). Further, it has been assumed that our third-person preferences are always time-neutral. Some have attempted to use these (presumed) differential patterns of future-bias—different across kinds of events and perspectives—to argue for the irrationality of hedonic future-bias. This (...)
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  20. Electrocortical Components of Anticipation and Consumption in a Monetary Incentive Delay Task.Douglas J. Angus, Andrew James Latham, Eddie Harmon‐Jones, Matthias Deliano, Bernard Balleine & David Braddon-Mitchell - 2017 - Psychophysiology 54 (11):1686-1705.
    In order to improve our understanding of the components that reflect functionally important processes during reward anticipation and consumption, we used principle components analyses (PCA) to separate and quantify averaged ERP data obtained from each stage of a modified monetary incentive delay (MID) task. Although a small number of recent ERP studies have reported that reward and loss cues potentiate ERPs during anticipation, action preparation, and consummatory stages of reward processing, these findings are inconsistent due to temporal and spatial overlap (...)
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  21.  87
    Forgiveness: From Conceptual Pluralism to Conceptual Ethics.Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller, James Norton & Luke Russell - forthcoming - In Court Lewis (ed.), The Philosophy of Forgiveness, Volume V. Vernon.
    Forgiveness theorists focus a good deal on explicating the content of what they take to be a shared folk concept of forgiveness. Our empirical research, however, suggests that there is a range of concepts of forgiveness present in the population, and therefore that we should be folk conceptual pluralists about forgiveness. We suggest two possible responses on the part of forgiveness theorists: (1) to deny folk conceptual pluralism by arguing that forgiveness is a functional concept and (2) to accept folk (...)
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  22. The Precision of Experienced Action Video-Game Players: Line Bisection Reveals Reduced Leftward Response Bias.Andrew James Latham, Lucy L. M. Patston & Lynette J. Tippett - 2014 - Attention, Perception, and Psychophysics 76 (8):2193-2198.
    Twenty-two experienced action video-game players (AVGPs) and 18 non-VGPs were tested on a pen-and-paper line bisection task that was untimed. Typically, right-handers bisect lines 2 % to the left of true centre, a bias thought to reflect the dominance of the right-hemisphere for visuospatial attention. Expertise may affect this bias, with expert musicians showing no bias in line bisection performance. Our results show that experienced-AVGPs also bisect lines with no bias with their right hand and a significantly reduced bias with (...)
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  23. On Believing That Time Does Not Flow, but Thinking That It Seems To.Kristie Miller, Alex Holcombe & Andrew James Latham - 2019 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 42.
    Hoerl & McCormack posit two systems – the temporal updating system and the temporal reasoning system – and suggest that they explain an inherent contradiction in people's naïve theory of time. We suggest there is no contradiction. Something does, however, require explanation: the tension between certain sophisticated beliefs about time, and certain phenomenological states or beliefs about those phenomenological states. The temporal updating mechanism posited by H&M may contribute to this tension.
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  24.  75
    From Proto-Forgiveness to Minimal Forgiveness.Andrew James Latham & Kristie Miller - forthcoming - Australasian Philosophical Review.
    In ‘Forgiveness, an Ordered Pluralism’, Fricker distinguishes two concepts of forgiveness, both of which are deployed in our forgiveness practices: moral justice forgiveness and gifted forgiveness. She then argues that the former is more explanatorily basic than the latter. We think Fricker is right about this. We will argue, however, that contra Fricker, it is a third more minimal concept that is most basic. Like Fricker, we will focus on the function of our practices, but in a way that is (...)
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  25.  52
    The Virtual Brain: 30 Years of Video-Game Play and Cognitive Abilities.Andrew James Latham, Lucy L. M. Patston & Lynette J. Tippett - 2013 - Frontiers in Psychology 4.
    Forty years have passed since video-games were first made widely available to the public and subsequently playing games has become a favorite past-time for many. Players continuously engage with dynamic visual displays with success contingent on the time-pressured deployment, and flexible allocation, of attention as well as precise bimanual movements. Evidence to date suggests that both brief and extensive exposure to video-game play can result in a broad range of enhancements to various cognitive faculties that generalize beyond the original context. (...)
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  26. Philosophical Methodology and Conceptions of Evil Action.Andrew James Latham, Kristie Miller & James Norton - 2019 - Metaphilosophy 50 (3):296-315.
    There is considerable philosophical dispute about what it takes for an action to be evil. The methodological assumption underlying this dispute is that there is a single, shared folk conception of evil action deployed amongst culturally similar people. Empirical research we undertook suggests that this assumption is false. There exist, amongst the folk, numerous conceptions of evil action. Hence, we argue, philosophical research is most profitably spent in two endeavours. First, in determining which (if any) conception of evil action we (...)
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  27.  64
    Just How Expert Are “Expert” Video-Game Players? Assessing the Experience and Expertise of Video-Game Players Across “Action” Video-Game Genres.Andrew James Latham, Lucy L. M. Patston & Lynette J. Tippett - 2013 - Frontiers in Psychology 4.
    Video-game play (particularly “action” video-games) holds exciting promise as an activity that may provide generalized enhancement to a wide range of perceptual and cognitive abilities (for review see Latham et al., 2013a). However, in this article we make the case that to assess accurately the effects of video-game play researchers must better characterize video-game experience and expertise. This requires a more precise and objective assessment of an individual's video-game history and skill level, and making finer distinctions between video-games that fall (...)
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  28. The Validation of Consciousness Meters: The Idiosyncratic and Intransitive Sequence of Conscious Levels.Andrew James Latham, Cameron Ellis, Lok-Chi Chan & David Braddon-Mitchell - 2017 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 24 (3-4):103-111.
    In this paper we describe a few interrelated issues for validating theories that posit levels of consciousness. First, validating levels of consciousness requires consensus about the ordering of conscious states, which cannot be easily achieved. This problem is particularly severe if we believe conscious states can be irreducibly smeared over time. Second, the relationship between conscious states is probably sometimes intransitive, which means levels of consciousness will not be amenable to a single continuous measure. Finally, even if a multidimensional approach (...)
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  29.  72
    Earlier Visual N1 Latencies in Expert Video-Game Players: A Temporal Basis of Enhanced Visuospatial Performance.Andrew James Latham, Lucy L. M. Patston, Christine Westermann, Ian J. Kirk & Lynette J. Tippett - 2013 - PLoS ONE 8 (9).
    Increasing behavioural evidence suggests that expert video game players (VGPs) show enhanced visual attention and visuospatial abilities, but what underlies these enhancements remains unclear. We administered the Poffenberger paradigm with concurrent electroencephalogram (EEG) recording to assess occipital N1 latencies and interhemispheric transfer time (IHTT) in expert VGPs. Participants comprised 15 right-handed male expert VGPs and 16 non-VGP controls matched for age, handedness, IQ and years of education. Expert VGPs began playing before age 10, had a minimum 8 years experience, and (...)
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