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The Ethics of Information$
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Luciano Floridi

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199641321

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199641321.001.0001

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The method of abstraction

The method of abstraction

Chapter:
(p.29) 3 The method of abstraction
Source:
The Ethics of Information
Author(s):

Luciano Floridi

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199641321.003.0003

In this chapter, I present a simplified version of the method of (levels of) abstraction (LoA), which will be used in the rest of the book. The chapter is divided into two parts. The first part provides a brief introduction to the method of abstraction. Although the definitions require some rigour, all the main concepts are introduced without assuming any previous knowledge. The definitions are illustrated by some simple examples, which are designed to familiarize the reader with the method. A comparison between levels of abstractions and interfaces is also developed in order to make the method more accessible and easily applicable in the following analyses. The second part provides a detailed application of the method to the analysis of telepresence (referred to simply as presence, whenever the term causes no confusion).

Keywords:   levels of abstraction, ontological commitment, virtual pornography, telepresence, informational privacy

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