Computation and cognitive science

Nowadays, it has become almost a matter of course to say that human mind is like a computer. Folks in all walks of life talk of ‘programming’ themselves, ‘multi-tasking’, running different ‘operating systems’, and sometimes of ‘crashing’ and being ‘rebooted’. Few who have used computers have not been touched by the appeal of the idea that our inner workings somehow resemble computing machines. The success of modern day computational psychology appears to bears witness to the explanatory and predictive pay-off in positing a connection between computers and minds. Among its other virtues, the computational framework has rendered theorising about inner processes respectable, it has provided a unified and naturalistic arena in which to conduct debates about psychological models, and it provides the tantalising possibility of accurately simulating and reproducing psychological processes. There is almost universal agreement that the mind is in some sense like a computer. But consensus quickly ends once we ask how the mind is supposed to be like a computer. Even after more than thirty years of model building, and a wealth of empirical work, surprisingly little consensus exists in cognitive science on the correct answer to this question. What is more, disagreement tends to lie at a relatively deep level. There is little agreement about the content of the notion of computation, what it means for a physical system, like the brain, to implement a computation, the broad-brush computational architecture of the mind, or how computational models fit with other models of the mind, such as control theoretic models, statistical models, or dynamical systems theory
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,360
External links
  •   Try with proxy.
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA

    No references found.

    Citations of this work BETA
    Similar books and articles

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index


    Total downloads

    22 ( #65,959 of 1,089,047 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    1 ( #69,722 of 1,089,047 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature

    Start a new thread
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.