Semantics

Semantics
   The Nature of Semantics in Philosophy and Linguistics
   There are people who maintain that there is no distinction between syntax and semantics, and there are others who lump the entire inference and "thought" component of an AI system under the label "semantics." Moreover, the philosophers, linguists, and programming language theorists have notions of semantics which are distinct from each other and from many of the notions of computational linguists and psychologists. . . .
   First, let me set up two caricatures which I will call the Linguist and the Philosopher, without thereby asserting that all linguists fall into the first category or philosophers in the second. Both, however, represent strong traditions in their respective fields. The Linguist has the following view of semantics in linguistics: He is interested in characterizing the fact that the same sentence can sometimes mean different things, and some sentences mean nothing at all. He would like to find some notation in which to express the different things which a sentence can mean and some procedure for determining whether a sentence is "anomalous" (i.e., has no meanings). The Philosopher on the other hand is concerned with specifying the meaning of a formal notation rather than a natural language. . . . His notation is already unambiguous. What he is concerned with is determining when an expression in the notation is a "true" preposition (in some appropriate formal sense of truth) and when it is false. . . . Meaning for the Philosopher is not defined in terms of some other notation in which to represent different possible interpretations of a sentence, but he is interested in the conditions for truth of an already formal representation. (Woods, 1975, pp. 40-41)

Historical dictionary of quotations in cognitive science. . 2015.

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  • Semantics — is the study of meaning in communication. The word derives from Greek σημαντικός ( semantikos ), significant , [cite web|url=http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/cgi bin/ptext?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0057%3Aentry%3D%2393797|title=Semantikos, Henry… …   Wikipedia

  • Semantics — Sem*an tics, n. sing. or pl. [Gr. shmantikos having meaning, from sh^ma a sign.] 1. the study of the meanings of words and of the sense development of words; formerly called {semasiology}. [PJC] 2. a doctrine and philosophical approach to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • semantics — [sə man′tiks] n. [< SEMANTIC, based on Fr sémantique] 1. the branch of linguistics concerned with the nature, the structure, and the development and changes of the meanings of speech forms, or with contextual meaning 2. a) SEMIOTICS b) the… …   English World dictionary

  • semantics — index meaning Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • Semantics —   [engl.], Semantik …   Universal-Lexikon

  • semantics — science of meaning in language, 1893, from Fr. sémantique (1883); see SEMANTIC (Cf. semantic) (also see ICS (Cf. ics)). Replaced semasiology (1847), from Ger. Semasiologie (1829), from Gk. semasia signification, meaning …   Etymology dictionary

  • semantics — ► PLURAL NOUN (usu. treated as sing. ) 1) the branch of linguistics and logic concerned with meaning. 2) the meaning of a word, phrase, sentence, or text. DERIVATIVES semanticist noun …   English terms dictionary

  • semantics — semanticist /si man teuh sist/, semantician /see man tish euhn/, n. /si man tiks/, n. (used with a sing. v.) 1. Ling. a. the study of meaning. b. the study of linguistic development by classifying and examining changes in meaning and form. 2.… …   Universalium

  • semantics — General semantics Gen er*al sem*an tics, n. (1933) a doctrine and philosophical approach to language and its relationship to thought and behavior, developed by Alfred Korzybski (1879 1950), which holds that the capacity to express ideas and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • semantics — noun /sɪˈmæntɪks/ a) A branch of linguistics studying the meaning of words. Semantics is a foundation of lexicography. b) The study of the relationship between words and their meanings. The semantics of the terms used are debatable. See Also:… …   Wiktionary

  • semantics — n. general; generative semantics * * * [sɪ mæntɪks] generative semantics general …   Combinatory dictionary

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