A $3.5 Billion Semantic Distinction

Steven Pinker is well on his way to a best selling book on, of all things: semantics. I haven’t finished it yet, but am finding it fascinating. What is surprising me, is how popular it is. Must be a lot more armchair ontologists out there than I thought.

One of the things that sent me to the blog though was his quantification of a semantic distinction. It turns out that the insurance policy on the World Trade Center has a maximum payout of $3.5 billion per event. The $3.5 billion dollar semantic question is did the two plane crashes constitute one event or two?

Stuff_of_thought Slightly longer review