The Externalist Foundations of a Truly Total Turing Test

Minds and Machines 22 (3):191-212 (2012)
Abstract
The paper begins by examining the original Turing Test (2T) and Searle’s antithetical Chinese Room Argument, which is intended to refute the 2T in particular, as well as any formal or abstract procedural theory of the mind in general. In the ensuing dispute between Searle and his own critics, I argue that Searle’s ‘internalist’ strategy is unable to deflect Dennett’s combined robotic-systems reply and the allied Total Turing Test (3T). Many would hold that the 3T marks the culmination of the dialectic and, in principle, constitutes a fully adequate empirical standard for judging that an artifact is intelligent on a par with human beings. However, the paper carries the debate forward by arguing that the sociolinguistic factors highlighted in externalist views in the philosophy of language indicate the need for a fundamental shift in perspective in a Truly Total Turing Test (4T). It’s not enough to focus on Dennett’s individual robot viewed as a system; instead, we need to focus on an ongoing system of such artifacts. Hence a 4T should evaluate the general category of cognitive organization under investigation, rather than the performance of single specimens. From this comprehensive standpoint, the question is not whether an individual instance could simulate intelligent behavior within the context of a pre-existing sociolinguistic culture developed by the human cognitive type. Instead the key issue is whether the artificial cognitive type itself is capable of producing a comparable sociolinguistic medium
Keywords Artificial intelligence  Chinese room argument  Computational theory of mind  Mental content  Semantic externalism  Turing tests
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References found in this work BETA
Ned Block (1981). Psychologism and Behaviorism. Philosophical Review 90 (1):5-43.
B. Jack Copeland (2000). The Turing Test. Minds and Machines 10 (4):519-539.
Daniel Dennett (1980). The Milk of Human Intentionality. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (3):428.
Robert French (2000). The Turing Test: The First Fifty Years. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 4 (3):115-121.

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