Mind Science

   

No Ghost in the Machine

Authors: Alan M. Kadin

The prevalent pre-scientific paradigm for understanding nature focused on design or intention, even for inanimate objects. This approach was debunked by Newton for physics, and by Darwin for biology. But belief in the unique supernatural nature of human intelligence is still widespread. I argue that biological intelligence is due to simple evolved structures based on neural networks, without the need for any new physical mechanisms (quantum or classical) or a “ghost in the machine”. Humans see agency and intent everywhere, because we are programmed to do so. The conscious mind may turn out to be a virtual reality simulation that is largely illusory. Furthermore, these structures may be emulated in artificial neural networks, to create true artificial intelligence.

Comments: 12 Pages. Submitted to Foundational Questions Institute Essay Contest on "Wandering Towards a Goal: How can mindless mathematical laws give rise to aims and intentions?"

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Submission history

[v1] 2017-03-16 20:29:20

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