Category Archives: Mind and AI

Is there a conscious perception finish line?

Global workspace theory (GWT) is the proposition that consciousness is composed of contents broadcast throughout the brain.  Various specialty processes compete for the limited capacity of the broadcasting mechanisms, to have their content broadcast to the all the other specialty … Continue reading

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For animal consciousness, is there a fact of the matter?

Peter Carruthers has been blogging this week on the thesis of his new book, Human and Animal Minds: The Consciousness Question Laid to Rest.  I mentioned Carruthers’ book in my post on global workspace theory (GWT), but didn’t get into … Continue reading

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The issues with higher order theories of consciousness

After the global workspace theory (GWT) post, someone asked me if I’m now down on higher order theories (HOT).  It’s fair to say I’m less enthusiastic about them than I used to be.  They still might describe important components of … Continue reading

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Global workspace theory: consciousness as brain wide information sharing

Lately I’ve been reading up on global workspace theory (GWT).  In a survey published last year, among general consciousness enthusiasts, integrated information theory (IIT) was the most popular theory, followed closely by GWT.  However, among active consciousness researchers, GWT was … Continue reading

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The magic step and the crucial fork

Those of you who’ve known me for a while may remember the long fascination I’ve had with Michael Graziano’s attention schema theory of consciousness.  I covered it early in this blog’s history and have returned to it multiple times over … Continue reading

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The layers of emotional feelings

One of the ongoing debates in neuroscience is on the nature of emotions, where they originate, where they are felt, and how innate versus learned they are. One view, championed by the late Jaak Panksepp and his followers, see emotions … Continue reading

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The barrier of meaning

In the post on the Chinese room, while concluding that Searle’s overall thesis isn’t demonstrated, I noted that if he had restricted himself to a more limited assertion, he might have had a point, that the Turing test doesn’t guarantee … Continue reading

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The problems with the Chinese room argument

In 1950, Alan Turing published a seminal paper on machine intelligence (which is available online).  Turing ponders whether machines can think.  However, he pretty much immediately abandons this initial question as hopelessly metaphysical and replaces it with another question that … Continue reading

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Integrated information theory

I think most of you know I’m not a fan of integrated information theory (IIT).  However, it is a theory proposed by scientists, and I’ve always had a mildly guilty conscience over not having read about it other than through articles … Continue reading

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A standard model of consciousness?

I’ve often noted that I find more consilience than disagreement between the empirically grounded theories of consciousness.  They seem to be looking at the problem at differing levels of organization, and together they may present a growing scientific consensus about … Continue reading

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