Fenribei Dec 27, Mehrsa rated it really liked it. The straight line is my past Determinism does not mean that our ment was determined before we were born. Vennett will is denied when you are locked up and prevented from some external reason to do what you desire. Instead, she had become unusually serious, thoughtful and, to me, fascinating.
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I thought I might as well summarize my position and move the conversation to a more sensible place. To cut to the chase, I am doubtful that the "problem of consciousness" really is such an interesting philosophical problem any more. Obviously, until you have reached a certain point in the development of human knowledge, the existence of the mental sphere - I have been conducting a long discussion about the nature of consciousness with Lotz, Robert and Wastrel in the comment thread to this review.
Obviously, until you have reached a certain point in the development of human knowledge, the existence of the mental sphere - thoughts, sensations, intentions, desires, and so on - is something utterly extraordinary that is in great need of an explanation. Two hundred and fifty years earlier, Newton had launched one of the most important paradigm changes in history: the physical world should be thought of as mathematical, and explained by mathematical formulas.
But the things he did manage to explain using his new methods were so remarkable that many insightful people decided that this was the right way to go. Turing, it seems to me, did something very similar. He suggested that the mental world should also be thought of as mathematical; once again, the reason why he got attention was that he found the appropriate kind of mathematics, this time the theory of computable functions.
As with Newton, it would be ridiculous to say that Turing solved the whole problem of the nature of the mind. But he was able to offer a rigorous way of conceptualizing the mental, and people could now start constructing not only mathematical formulas that described mental functions, but also artifacts which reified those formulas as physical processes.
Or, to put it more simply, you could build machines that were able to think. We have very unsatisfactory models for emotion and language. For example, there was no decent idea of what "heat" might be. As recently as the 80s, philosopher Hubert Dreyfus listed both of these as tasks which no machine would ever, even in principle, be able to perform.
Needless to say, this idea may turn out to out to be mistaken. It lets you do philosophy in a quantitative way and make measurable, incremental progress.
El ojo de la mente: Fantasías y reflexiones sobre el yo y el alma
Douglas Hofstadter & Daniel Dennett - El ojo de la Mente.pdf