[Wittrs] Re: Searle's CRA and its Implications

  • From: Gordon Swobe <gts_2000@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 16 Mar 2010 08:15:24 -0700 (PDT)

I should have elaborated a bit more here to make my meaning clear, Stuart. I 

> If you believe a million cpu's doing syntactic operations
> on symbols will generate conscious understanding when one
> cpu does not then it seems to me that you must believe
> organic brains actually exist as multi-processor computers.

I take it you believe intentionality/semantics will arise as an emergent 
property in massive multi-processor systems. Given the findings of the CR 
thought experiment, and given that no strong AI systems exist today, it seems 
to me that either 1) you must believe in magic, or 2) you must believe the 
brain counts as such a system.

In the first case your argument amounts to a statement of religious faith. In 
the second case you have what you might consider evidence to support your 
theory. If you believe the brain really exists as a computer, and if you 
believe semantics arises as an emergent property of its computations, then it 
would seem possible to you that strong AI=true. 

But can we consider the brain a computer in the first place? I don't think so.

Is the Brain a Digital Computer?



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