- This pseudo-Paper is intended as the mechanism to record time spent on the Note 'Computers1' during my Thesis research, as from 2017.
- For the actual time recorded, click on "Paper Summary" above.
Write-up2 (as at 31/08/2017 19:35:02): Computers
- This Note is restricted to the role Computers play in the philosophy of Mind and Personal Identity. While I am an animalist4, the mind5 and brain6 are important topics in alternative accounts – in particular the Psychological View7 and the Constitution View8.
- The “Computer Model” of the mind seems to be the dominant paradigm in neuroscience. This is the view that the brain operates like a digital computer. This is disputed by (eg.) "Epstein (Robert) - The empty brain".
- There’s a cross-over in much of the above topic with Functionalism9.
- Where this gets exciting is in the Transhumanist10 hope of uploading (you11, or your mind) to a computer. This will be dealt with under the head of Uploading12.
- A related issue – also currently noted under Transhumanism – is whether we are (most probably) living in a computer simulations, whether or not we might have been uploaded there.
- Also, there’s the whole question of Artificial Intelligence13, and in particular whether computers – or maybe even computer programs – might ever become persons14.
- This topic might get caught up in the “Connectionism15” debate, and whether connectionism – which seeks to adopt the neural connectionist architecture of the brain – can account for the “systematicity of cognition16”. I don’t want to stray too far down this interesting path.
- A reading list (where not covered elsewhere) might start with17:-
- "Baker (Lynne Rudder) - Why Computers Can't Act", Baker
- "Ball (Philip) - We might live in a computer program, but it may not matter", Ball
- "Barberousse (Anouk), Francescelli (Sara) & Imbert (Cyrille) - Computer Simulations as Experiments", Barberousse
- "Barbour (Ian) - Neuroscience, Artificial Intelligence, and Human Nature: Theological and Philosophical Reflections", Barbour
- "Block (Ned) - The Mind as the Software of the Brain", Block18
- "Bostrom (Nick) - Are You Living in a Computer Simulation?", Bostrom
- "Bostrom (Nick) - How Long Before Superintelligence?", Bostrom
- "Brennan (Andrew) - Survival", Brennan
- "Bynum (Terrell Ward) - Two Philosophers of the Information Age", Bynum
- "Campbell (Scott) - Persons and Substances", Campbell
- "Christian (Brian) - The Most Human Human: A Defence of Humanity in the Age of the Computer", Christian
- "Churchland (Paul) & Churchland (Patricia) - Could a Machine Think?", Churchland
- "Cole (David) - Artificial Intelligence and Personal Identity", Cole
- "Dainton (Barry) - Self: Philosophy In Transit: Prologue", Dainton
- "Dennett (Daniel) - Artifactual Selves: a Response to Lynne Rudder Baker", Dennett
- "Dennett (Daniel) - When Hal Kills, Who's to Blame? Computer Ethics", Dennett
- "Dennett (Daniel) - Where Am I?", Dennett19
- "Dennett (Daniel) - Why You Can't Make a Computer that Feels Pain", Dennett
- "Fetzer (James) - Computers and Cognition", Fetzer
- "Frigg (Roman) & Reiss (Julian) - The Philosophy of Simulation: Hot New Issues or Same Old Stew?", Frigg20
- "Gelernter (David) - The Muse in the Machine - Computers and Creative Thought", Gelernter21
- "Goertzel (Ben) - Artificial General Intelligence and the Future of Humanity", Goertzel
- "Graham (George) - Mind and Belief in Computers", Graham
- "Graziano (Michael) - Endless fun", Graziano
- "Hauser (Larry) - Artificial Intelligence", Hauser
- "Hofstadter (Douglas) - Who Shoves Whom around inside the Careenium? Or What Is the Meaning of the Word 'I'?", Hofstadter
- "Kaess (Genevieve) - Could Consciousness Emerge from a Machine Language?", Kaess
- "Kim (Jaegwon) - Mind as a Computer: Machine Functionalism", Kim
- "Lavelle (Suilin) - Minds, Brains and Computers", Lavelle
- "Leiber (Justin) - Can Animals and Machines Be Persons? : Introduction, Setting, Notes & Reading List", Leiber
- "MacKay (Donald) - Computer Software and Life After Death", MacKay
- "Maxwell (Grover) - Intentionality: Hardware, not software", Maxwell
- "Nagel (Thomas) - Searle: Why We Are Not Computers", Nagel
- "Olson (Eric) - Computer-Generated Life", Olson
- "Parker (Wendy) - Does Matter Really Matter? Computer Simulations, Experiments, and Materiality", Parker22
- "Pollock (John L.) - How to Build a Person: A Prolegomenon", Pollock
- "Pollock (John L.) - What Am I? Virtual Machines and the Mind/Body Problem", Pollock
- "Sandberg (Anders) & Bostrom (Nick) - Whole Brain Emulation: A Roadmap", Sandberg
- "Searle (John) - Can Computers Think?", Searle23
- "Searle (John) - Is the Brain's Mind a Computer Program?", Searle24
- "Searle (John) - ‘I Married a Computer’: An Exchange (between Ray Kurzweil and John Searle)", Searle
- "Searle (John) - Minds, Brains, and Programs", Searle
- "Searle (John) - The Rediscovery of the Mind", Searle
- "Simons (Geoff) - Are Computers Alive? Evolution and New Life Forms", Simons
- "Snowdon (Paul) - Philosophy and the Mind/Body Problem", Snowdon
- "Steele (Guy L.) - Comments on Hofstadter's 'Who Shoves Whom around inside the Careenium?'", Steele
- "Wilensky (Robert) - Computers, cognition and philosophy", Wilensky
- "Wilkes (Kathleen) - Models of Mind", Wilkes
- "Zimmerman (Dean) - Bodily Resurrection: The Falling Elevator Model Revisited", Zimmerman
- This is mostly a place-holder25. There is currently no categorised reading-list for this topic.
- This is the write-up as it was when this Abstract was last output, with text as at the timestamp indicated (31/08/2017 19:35:02).
- Link to Latest Write-Up Note.
Footnote 13: I can’t get into this in any detail.
- A number of my philosophical Notes are “promissory notes” currently only listing the books and papers (if any) I possess on the topic concerned.
- I’ve decided to add some text – whether by way of motivation, or something more substantive – for all these identified topics related to my Thesis.
- As I want to do this fairly quickly, the text may be confused or show surprising ignorance.
- The reader (if such exists) will have to bear with me, and display the principle of charity while this footnote exists.
Footnote 15: Footnote 16: Footnote 17: The list is rather long, and will need pruning when I get down to this topic.
Footnote 18: See "Block (Ned) - The Computer Model of the Mind" for a shorter version.
Footnote 19: See "Sanford (David H.) - Where Was I?" for a follow-up (with a commentary by Dennett).
Footnote 20: This paper no doubt considers the use of computers for simulating situations other than minds, so might not be directly relevant.
Footnote 21: "Gelernter (David) - Mirror Worlds" is more a prediction of the internet, and is probably (even) less relevant.
Footnote 22: This seems somewhat tangential, as it’s not focused on simulating persons, but it might be useful background.
Footnote 23: Footnote 24: See also "Searle (John) - Is the Brain's Mind a Computer Program? MIT Comments".
Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)
- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2018