Topic: thought is computational

topics > computer science > Group: artificial intelligence

relationship between brain and behavior

artificial neuron nets
intelligent machines
knowledge representation
limitations of artificial intelligence and cognitive science
organizations as systems
people vs. computers
philosophy of mind
physics as computation
reality is a machine
self reference
semantic networks
Turing test
what is a computer
what is a number


Are numbers and computation the foundation for thought and reality? This is an ancient idea. Arithmetic and the decimal number system are universally understood. The successes of physics, technology, and computers have reinforced the primacy of computation. For example, Galileo showed that falling objects behaved as the odd numbers.

Clearly computation is important. If not primary, then how is the success of computation explained? Perhaps by agreement. By agreeing to a number system, we can recreate computation as needed. (cbb 6/06)

Subtopic: reality as numeric up

Quote: one's enough to bring everything out of nothing; binary number system [»leibGW_1697]
Quote: reality should have a purely algebraic theory since quantum phenomena are completely described by a finite set of numbers; not a continuous field [»einsA_1956, OK]
Quote: all things involve number and number is that which is composed of units [»alkhMM_825, OK]
Quote: Pythagoreans saw numbers as the primary natures, the elements of all things; including justice, soul, mind, musical modes, relations, heaven [»aris_322a]
Quote: either the Turing-Church thesis implies that all physically realizable processes can be duplicated by computers or it does not limit physical processes [»conrM5_1985]

Subtopic: thought as computational up

Quote: Leibniz's goal: to conceive all propositions in the form of terms [»leibGW_1686]
Quote: Hobbes--everything done by our mind is a computation; 'is' and 'is not' corresponds to + and - [»leibGW_1666]
Quote: an infant's mind is an unorganized machine; with training could produce a universal machine, or a more normal type of mind [»turiAM9_1947]
Quote: machines will simulate the behaviour of the human mind very closely; will be worth attention just like a human [»copeBJ_1999, OK]
Quote: in Leibniz's scientia generalis or ars characteristica, all true sentences would be mechanically derived and decidable; errors in reasoning would be calculation mistakes [»kramS2_1996]
Quote: if terms are written as their indefinable, first terms, it is easy to resolve predicates and derive terms [»leibGW_1666]
Quote: the operations of the brain can be digitally simulated just like the behavior of the stock market; due to Church's thesis [»searJR_1992]
Quote: by means of numbers we can judge immediately whether propositions are proved and hence, discover everything that can be proved
Quote: for every true universal, affirmative, categorical proposition the predicate is contained numerically in the subject [»leibGW4_1679]
Quote: analyze categories as mutipart numbers; e.g. 'Interval' is 2.3.10 where 2 is space, 3 is between, and 10 is whole [»leibGW_1666]
Quote: can general computation capture thought processes? Zuse studied chess to test this idea
Quote: there is no inherent limitation to the intelligence of a computer program; e.g., Post's automatic improvement process for deciding if a sentence is a theorem [»mccaJ8_1962]

Subtopic: thought as a machine up

Quote: Boole investigated the fundamental laws of thought with a symbolic language, applied it to probabilities, and discussed the consequences [»boolG_1854, OK]
Quote: AI's data structures are primitive examples of representations that understand themselves; can conceivably replace the homunculus with an army of mechanical homunculi
Quote: the speed of computers and their apparent grace opens the possibility that computation plays a role in cognition
Quote: our thoughts, like other vital phenomena, are the expression of molecular changes [»wallAR_1870, OK]
Quote: careful deduction as in geometric proofs can reveal all human knowledge [»descR_1637]
Quote: memories are gestalts recalled from a subpart; ambiguities resolved statistically
Quote: a paper machine for playing chess acts as if it were alive; it is difficult to distinguish from a rather poor chess player [»turiAM9_1947]

Subtopic: thought is deterministic up

Quote: our understanding of the world is so compact and constrained that each step follows more or less inexorably from the last [»baumEB_2004]
Quote: life arises from the execution of a computer program, i.e., syntax; the complex world is captured by a compact program [»baumEB_2004]
Quote: DNA defines mind; reasoning is fast because the mind only searches through meaningful possibilities [»baumEB_2004]
Quote: a program reflects a natural process if it produces the same data points
Quote: program evolution has produced minds that mirror the structure of the world and perform amazing calculations about the world [»baumEB_2004]

Subtopic: people as machines up

Quote: if a machine is a physical system capable of performing certain functions, then humans are machines and machines can think [»searJR1_1990]
Quote: an ensemble is a collection of asynchronous activities that communicate; a computer, a person, another ensemble [»geleD2_1992]
Quote: in Structured Analysis, an organization is an information processing system of rules, people, tools, and raw materials [»bansJP4_1993]
Quote: a CD actor, a concrete object, decides to act upon another concrete object; a rock is a concrete object but not an actor; both are picture producers [»schaRC_1981]
Quote: a Petri net can exactly describe a person's behavior; can communicate with other Petri nets; not conflict-free [»petrCA1_1966]
QuoteRef: vanwA_1969 ;;88 "Algol 68 is a language in which "programs" can be formulated for "computers", i.e. "automata" or "human beings"."

Subtopic: brain as a machine up

Quote: the mind and the brain are inseparable with an electrochemical explanation of consciousness; proved if and when machines are conscious [»raymC3_1996]
Quote: brains solve speed and accuracy problems by massively parallel computation [»hintG_1984]
Quote: collective, computational properties can arise from a network of simple neurons and little structure [»hopfJJ4_1982]
Quote: the cognitive/perceptual/motor system contains about three million items [»cherC5_1988]
Quote: the full mind's program is practically unknowable; huge, branchy, not formal, a kludge [»cherC5_1988]
Quote: the emergent phenomena in our brains is a kind of Strange Loop where the top level both influences and is defined by the bottom level [»hofsDR_1979]
Quote: the marine snail's nervous system is well-understand and can function independently of the body; i.e., no fundamental difference between brain and computers [»schwJ_1987]
Quote: brains must be made from a proliferation of simple, well-defined circuits [»hopfJJ4_1982]
Quote: with determination of the neuron net, the unknowable object of knowledge, the "thing in itself," ceases to be unknowable [»mccuWS_1943]
Quote: consciousness is an emergent property of the brain just like solidarity or liquidity of water; both mental and physical [»searJR_1992]

Subtopic: meaning has a mechanical representation up

Quote: must be a notation for representing the meaning of sentences independent of word sequence [»woodWA_1975]
Quote: the class of grammatical sequences must be predetermined, but can't simply list all of the morphemes as done with phonemes [»quinWV8_1951]
Quote: a child learns a natural language by discovering a deep and abstract theory [»chomN_1965]
Quote: every aspect of thinking is a high-level description of a system governed by simple, even formal rules [»hofsDR_1979]
Quote: AI assumes that one can explain the high-level traffic of symbol activations in its own terms, without neural events [»hofsDR_1979]

Subtopic: mathematics as reasoning up

Quote: through mathematical analysis, there is no problem that cannot be solved [»vietF_1591]
Quote: can reduce any problem in geometry to a knowledge of the lengths of certain straight lines [»descR_1641a]

Subtopic: man as machine but not behavior, consciousness up

Quote: though man is a law-driven physical object, behavior is not explainable systematically
Quote: consciousness is an emergent property of the brain just like solidarity or liquidity of water; both mental and physical [»searJR_1992]
Quote: how can accurate endpoints arise from careless, indifferent paths?
Quote: thought as a computer program is a completely different question than it is for physical, causal properties of machines; abstract, computational, independent of substance [»searJR1_1990]
Quote: brains cause minds; i.e, every mental event is caused by specific neurons firing in specific neural architectures [»searJR1_1990]
Quote: human brains can not produce mental events solely by running a computer program

Subtopic: number as irrational up

Quote: the most irrational accounts of the soul is that the soul is a number that moves itself [»aris_322b]

Subtopic: responsibility despite determinism up

Quote: everything is determined, but we must act responsibly as if free will existed

Related Topics up

Group: psychology   (9 topics, 307 quotes)
Group: relationship between brain and behavior   (9 topics, 332 quotes)

Topic: artificial neuron nets (29 items)
Topic: intelligent machines (28 items)
Topic: knowledge representation (41 items)
Topic: limitations of artificial intelligence and cognitive science (64 items)
Topic: organizations as systems (29 items)
Topic: people vs. computers (55 items)
Topic: philosophy of mind (78 items)
Topic: physics as computation (31 items)
Topic: reality is a machine (48 items)
Topic: self reference (27 items)
Topic: semantic networks (42 items)
Topic: Turing test (13 items)
Topic: what is a computer (62 items)
Topic: what is a number
(55 items)

Updated barberCB 7/05
Copyright © 2002-2008 by C. Bradford Barber. All rights reserved.
Thesa is a trademark of C. Bradford Barber.