## Semiotics, Semiosis, Sign Relations • Discussion 9

MR:
Okay, I may have mixed up the meanings of “object” and “interpretant” in my plain language translations above?  Re determination, I read “B is determined by A” as meaning the conjunction of

$\forall a \in A, \, \exists b \in B, \, \exists c \in C, \, R(a,b,c)$

and

$\forall a \in A, \, \forall c \in C, \, R(a,b,c) \wedge R(a,b',c) \Rightarrow b = b'$   ?

Whether this is right depends on the answers to my previous questions.

Dear Morgan,

Let’s look at the gloss I gave for Determination under the Definition of a Sign Relation.

Determination.  Peirce’s concept of determination is broader in several directions than the sense of the word referring to strictly deterministic causal-temporal processes.  First, and especially in this context, he is invoking a more general concept of determination, what is called formal or informational determination, as in saying “two points determine a line”, rather than the more special cases of causal and temporal determinisms.  Second, he characteristically allows for what is called determination in measure, that is, an order of determinism admitting a full spectrum of more and less determined relationships.

Other words for this general order of determination are structure, pattern, law, form, and the one arising especially in cybernetics and systems theory, constraint.  It’s what happens when not everything that might happen actually does.  (The stochastic mechanic or the quantum technician will probably quip at this point, At least, not with equal probability.)

Regards,

Jon

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