27 votes

Testing Free Will

is it possible for such agents to determine whether or not they possess free will? A precondition for answering this question is that the term "free will" is sufficiently well defined. IMHO,...
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12 votes
Accepted

What are computable numbers, and what is their philosophical significance?

All mathematical formalizations of (intuitive) computability are known to be equivalent, in particular they are all equivalent to computability on the universal Turing machine. So technological ...
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  • 41k
11 votes

What are the philosophical consequences of the undecidability of the spectral gap in quantum theory?

What the result means, essentially, is that in certain toy models there can be no algorithm deriving some macroscopic characteristics (spectral gap) from microscopic parameters of the models. The main ...
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  • 41k
11 votes

Is philosophy computation?

If philosophy is mathematics and mathematics is computation, can I conclude that philosophy is computation? Yes. So is philosophy merely computation? No because philosophy isn't mathematics and ...
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  • 1,715
9 votes

How can the physical world be an abstract mathematical structure a la Tegmark?

Douglas Hofstadter would call this a strange loop. If one believes mathematics can "fully describe" reality, one can make a pitch to claim that reality is a subset of mathematics. Empirically, these ...
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  • 17.3k
9 votes
Accepted

Logic and Computation: a philosophical viewpoint on Curry-Howard isomorphism

I think you are right to be impressed with the Curry-Howard correspondence. It is a detailed and extensive rule-by-rule and feature-by-feature isomorphism. This strongly suggests that proof and ...
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  • 15.7k
7 votes

How does Penrose defeat the computational theory of mind?

This is intended as a complement to Conifold's and Jobermark' answers Penrose's argument can be broken down to two parts: Based on Lucas's Gödelian argument against mechanism, he argues that the ...
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7 votes

Why doesn't the Chinese room learn Chinese?

Even if the man inside the Chinese room memorised every single translation instance (theoretically every possible combination which is impossible given our limited memory, but it's a thought ...
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  • 134
6 votes
Accepted

Do machine learning algorithms have knowledge (if not justified true beliefs)?

The OP proposal is similar in spirit to the one in Farkas's paper Belief May Not Be a Necessary Condition for Knowledge. His primary example is Otto, a guy with severe memory loss, who keeps all ...
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  • 41k
5 votes
Accepted

Do limitations on computability and computational resources have any consequences for epistemology?

So far considerations based on computational resources are consequential only to a small group of philosophers known as radical anti-realists, who extend strict finitism to epistemology. Unlike ...
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  • 41k
5 votes
Accepted

How does Penrose defeat the computational theory of mind?

The linked IEP article seems to me to be accurately summarized in the OP:"the argument about quantum processes in the brain falls short if we reject the original Gödelian argument... Penrose goes on ...
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  • 41k
5 votes

Consciousness in Simulation theory & AI, why do some believe that it is even possible?

Nobody has ever found any credible evidence that the human brain is anything besides a very complicated computer running strange software. Nobody has ever found any credible evidence that humans are ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Might additional spacial dimensions provide higher processing efficiency in computing?

Interestingly enough we have an answer: The Blue Gene/Q has a 5D torus interconnect, meaning any software or logic developed for it would STRONGLY resemble the structure you are looking for. ...
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  • 17.3k
4 votes

What did John Searle mean by these self-contradictory statements?

In reverse order: "What on Earth does or did it mean that “the brain is a digital computer”. Literally it's just nonsense": Obviously the brain doesn't use binary code or run assembler, it uses ...
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4 votes
Accepted

What do dual-intuitionistic and minimal logic model?

Minimal logic is intuitionistic logic without ex falso quodlibet. One way to understand the difference in interpretation between minimal (ML), intuitionistic (IL) and classical logic (CL) is by ...
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  • 15.7k
4 votes

How does Penrose defeat the computational theory of mind?

Penrose believes that quantum mechanics is incomplete. So even if it is true that all quantum processes as they are currently known are computational, Penrose would argue there's something missing and ...
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  • 1,878
4 votes

Why doesn't the Chinese room learn Chinese?

There seem to be several things not understood in asking this question. Searle gave an intuitive argument. He did not and still does not understand the details so there was a limit to what he could ...
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4 votes

Can computers do things Turing machines can't?

Short answer is no; modern computers cannot do things that Turing machines can't do. What they can do is run very sophisticated, complex Turing machines that simulate things that Turing machines would ...
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  • 1,457
4 votes

Where is the knowledge that AI's "knowledge representations" represent?

In the context of artificial intelligent agents and AI, it appears that know is just the primitive connecting those agents to their representations of knowledge. In the 1995 edition of Artificial ...
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  • 404
4 votes

Human Mind vs Computer

So my question is: what is it that human mind can do which a computer (Universal TM) can not? INTRODUCTION Let us presume that you set aside the obvious retort: human brains are embodied and have ...
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  • 11.3k
4 votes

Consciousness in Simulation theory & AI, why do some believe that it is even possible?

Materialism perspective One of the arguments for the possibility of simulated minds comes from the assumption that in general, physics can be simulated. If all physics can be simulated, then it must ...
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  • 1,202
4 votes

Paradoxes regarding Identity of consciousness, illusion of present time

Your thought experiment isolates a key tension in some modern views of consciousness. There is some underlying conflict between two views you are assuming in your question: A) Consciousness is ...
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4 votes

Testing Free Will

I don't really think it can ever be tested. Personally what convinces me there is no free will is the large amount of evidence that the chemistry of the brain determines our moods, even our ...
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  • 2,981
4 votes

Testing Free Will

This is actually a question about philosophy of science. I'm surprised nobody has mentioned the criteria of falsifiability. Simply put, for a hypothesis to even be suitable to be proven or disproven ...
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4 votes

What are the different kinds of computation that exist?

Well, there are different kinds of physical computers as the other answer touched on. But if you're asking about types of computation, then in mathematics and computer science this often refers to ...
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  • 7,025
4 votes

Why are there no Computer Algebra Systems designed to import known mathematical identities/theorems?

What you're looking for is not a computer algebra system, but a proof assistant, such as Mizar, Coq, or Agda. Proof assistants are designed for the formalization of mathematical proofs in any field of ...
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  • 7,025
3 votes

Do machine learning algorithms have knowledge (if not justified true beliefs)?

This borders around the idea of the "Chinese Room Thought Experiment". If you're not familiar with this experiment the following video and quote will be very helpful. Searle's thought ...
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3 votes
Accepted

Quantum Mechanics has formally undecidable problems. What is the philosophical significance of this?

The problem described in that paper is about calculating the limiting behavior of a lattice as its size goes to infinity. Because the uncomputability only comes in when considering the limit, it is ...
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