David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 89 (1):32–73 (2008)
I offer an explication of the notion of computer, grounded in the practices of computability theorists and computer scientists. I begin by explaining what distinguishes computers from calculators. Then, I offer a systematic taxonomy of kinds of computer, including hard-wired versus programmable, general-purpose versus special-purpose, analog versus digital, and serial versus parallel, giving explicit criteria for each kind. My account is mechanistic: which class a system belongs in, and which functions are computable by which system, depends on the system's mechanistic properties. Finally, I briefly illustrate how my account sheds light on some issues in the history and philosophy of computing as well as the philosophy of mind.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Colin Allen, Marc Bekoff & George V. Lauder (eds.) (1998). Nature's Purposes: Analyses of Function and Design in Biology. The Mit Press.
Andre Ariew, Robert C. Cummins & Mark Perlman (eds.) (2002). Functions: New Essays in the Philosophy of Psychology and Biology. Oxford University Press.
William P. Bechtel, Mental Mechanisms: Philosophical Perspectives on the Sciences of Cognition and the Brain.
James Blachowicz (1997). Analog Representation Beyond Mental Imagery. Journal of Philosophy 94 (2):55 - 84.
James A. Blachowicz (1997). Analog Representation Beyond Mental Imagery. Journal of Philosophy 94 (2):55-84.
Citations of this work BETA
Gualtiero Piccinini & Carl Craver (2011). Integrating Psychology and Neuroscience: Functional Analyses as Mechanism Sketches. [REVIEW] Synthese 183 (3):283-311.
Corey J. Maley (2011). Analog and Digital, Continuous and Discrete. Philosophical Studies 155 (1):117-131.
Gualtiero Piccinini (2010). The Mind as Neural Software? Understanding Functionalism, Computationalism, and Computational Functionalism. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (2):269-311.
Gualtiero Piccinini (2009). Computationalism in the Philosophy of Mind. Philosophy Compass 4 (3):515-532.
Gualtiero Piccinini & Andrea Scarantino (2010). Computation Vs. Information Processing: Why Their Difference Matters to Cognitive Science. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 41 (3):237-246.
Similar books and articles
Mark E. Wunderlich (2010). Two Issues in Computer Ethics for Non-Programmers. International Journal of Applied Philosophy 24 (2):255-264.
James A. Anderson (2003). Arithmetic on a Parallel Computer: Perception Versus Logic. [REVIEW] Brain and Mind 4 (2):169-188.
L.�szl� Ropolyi (1999). Life-Worlds and Social Relations in Computers. AI and Society 13 (1-2):69-87.
C. F. Boyle (1994). Computation as an Intrinsic Property. Minds and Machines 4 (4):451-67.
Mark Hogarth (2004). Deciding Arithmetic Using SAD Computers. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 55 (4):681-691.
Nir Fresco (2008). An Analysis of the Criteria for Evaluating Adequate Theories of Computation. Minds and Machines 18 (3):379-401.
Margaret A. Boden (1988). Computer Models On Mind: Computational Approaches In Theoretical Psychology. Cambridge University Press.
Sanford C. Goldberg (1997). The Very Idea of Computer Self-Knowledge and Self-Deception. Minds and Machines 7 (4):515-529.
Gualtiero Piccinini (2003). Computations and Computers in the Sciences of Mind and Brain. Dissertation. Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh
Gualtiero Piccinini (2007). Computing Mechanisms. Philosophy of Science 74 (4):501-526.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads54 ( #29,103 of 1,100,975 )
Recent downloads (6 months)10 ( #19,498 of 1,100,975 )
How can I increase my downloads?