Evoking a new way of thinking.
Key Vocabulary: Ambiguity
Ambiguity differs from uncertainty.
Ambiguity is the co-presence of multiple options and/or multiple meanings.
Uncertainty, by contrast, is the lack of a
willingness to act (and thus factors which contribute to that
lack of willingness are factors which contribute to
When we act, we act AS IF (for that split second)
we are certain.
Thus, a chair offers numerous affordances (to sit, as a table, as a ladder, as a wedge, as a weapon, etc.). The appropriate affordance is context specific. The meaning of "the affordance of a chair" in the absence of a specification of a context is ambiguous. (Especially since the request is for "the" affordance, as if there was only one.)
The act of sitting is a an act of certainty regarding the affordance of the chair regardless of the ambiguities which may otherwise exist. To then also put a book beside you on the chair is also a certain act (using the chair as a table or a holder) regardless of the simultaneity of a set of other possible meanings and affordances. By contrast, if when faced with 50 empty chairs and a demand to please sit you are paralyzed by choice -- that is uncertainty.