Things: Objects and Processes

  • Dov Dori


Immanuel Kant said that “Objects are our way of knowing.” While this is obviously true, it is not the whole truth, but only about half of it. Objects are our way of knowing what exists, or in other words, the of systems. To know what happens, to understand systems’ behavior, a second, complementary type of things is needed—processes. We know of the existence of an object if we can name it and refer to its unconditional, relatively stable existence, but without processes we cannot tell how this object is transformed—how it is created, how its states change over time, and how it disappears. These two fundamental concepts—objects and processes, generalized as things—are the focus of this chapter.


Association Criterion Term Object Effect Link Mental Construct Procedural Link 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Ashby, W.R. Concepts of Operand, Operator, Transform. George Washington University, St. Louis, 2001. Accessed March 16, 2015.
  2. Bunge, M. Treatise on Basic Philosophy, Vol. 3, Ontology I, The Furniture of the World. Reidel, Boston, MA, 1977.Google Scholar
  3. Bunge, M. Treatise on Basic Philosophy, Vol. 4, Ontology II, A World of Systems. Reidel, Boston, MA, 1979.Google Scholar
  4. Kostovic, I. and Rakic, P. Developmental history of the transient subplate zone in the visual and somatosensory cortex of the macaque monkey and human brain. J. Comp. Neurol., 297: 441–470, 1990. doi:  10.1002/cne.902970309 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. MacIntyre, J. What’s wrong with the noun/adjective/verb object oriented design strategy (2010). Accessed June 9, 2015.
  6. Shannon, C.E. and Weaver, J. The Mathematical Theory of Communication, University of Illinois Press, 1949.Google Scholar
  7. Wand, Y. and Weber, R. An Ontological Evaluation of Systems Analysis and Design Methods. In Falkenberg, E.D. and Lindgreen, P. (Eds.) Information System Concepts: An In-Depth Analysis. Elsevier Science Publishers B.V. (North Holland), IFIP, pp. 145–172, 1989.Google Scholar
  8. Wand, Y. and Weber, R. On the Ontological Expressiveness of Information Systems Analysis and Design Grammars. Journal of Information Systems 3, pp. 217–237, 1993.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Weber, R. H. and Weber, R. Internet of Things, Legal Perspectives. Springer, 2010.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dov Dori
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Technion, Israel Institute of TechnologyHaifaIsrael
  2. 2.Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA

Personalised recommendations