Machine Intelligence and Explication


Wieringa, Roel (1987) Machine Intelligence and Explication. Filosofische Reeks ; 21 . Eburon, Delft. ISBN 9789051660050

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Abstract:This report is an MA ("doctoraal") thesis submitted to the department of philosophy, university of Amsterdam. It attempts to answer the question whether machines can think by conceptual analysis. Ideally. a conceptual analysis should give plausible explications of the concepts of "machine" and "intelli­gence" and then investigate the intersection of the sets of entities defined b) these explications. If the intersection is empty and the a priori argument is correct (or plausible), then empirical research into machine intelligence will {plausibly) not result in an intelligent machine. On the other hand, if conceptual analysis cannot show the intersection to be empty. it remains an empirical (or rather, technical) question whether such machines can actually be constructed. Such a neat argument cannot be produced, however, due to the vagueness of the concept of intelli­gence. It is quite possible to provide a rather uncontroversial explication of the concept of machine. Exist­ing controversy about the possibility of machine intelligence is about the nature of intelligence, not about the nature of machines. Indeed, if intelligence could be unambiguously defined, we could (in principle) build a machine to implement it. Those who believe that intelligence cannot be realized in a machine, can­ not base their arguments on an explicit and uncontroversial analysis of the concept of intelligence. The argument in this essay therefore follows a different route than the ideal argument. After a defin­ition of machine which combines the important characteristics of that concept in computer science and sys­tems theory, try to explicate why we think this definition captures our informal intuitions about the nature of machine-like, mechanical processes adequately. This leads to an explication of what explicitly described processes are. [brace not closed]
Item Type:Book
Additional information:Also appeared as Technical Report IR-129, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, The Netherlands ;
Copyright:© 1987 Eburon
Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS)
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