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Understanding Computational Models of Mind

Dr. Frances Egan

Thursday, October 22, 2015, 01:00pm - 02:00pm

Rutgers University, Department of Philosophy

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The so-called 'computational theory of mind' claims that mental processes are computational processes. After explaining how this claim should be understood, I consider the popular view that it is just a metaphor to speak of the mind as a computer. I argue that this view is mistaken: computationalism, if true, implies that the human mind is a computer in the same sense that iPads and hand calculators are computers. I then consider how computational explanations of cognitive capacities are constrained by our commonsense conception of ourselves, and how computationalism puts pressure on the very idea of mind.

Dr. Frances Egan