David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Minds and Machines 12 (3):353-381 (2002)
We argue that Löb's Theorem implies a limitation on mechanism. Specifically, we argue, via an application of a generalized version of Löb's Theorem, that any particular device known by an observer to be mechanical cannot be used as an epistemic authority (of a particular type) by that observer: either the belief-set of such an authority is not mechanizable or, if it is, there is no identifiable formal system of which the observer can know (or truly believe) it to be the theorem-set. This gives, we believe, an important and hitherto unnoticed connection between mechanism and the use of authorities by human-like epistemic agents.
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