Chinese rooms and program portability

I argue in this article that there is a mistake in Searle's Chinese room argument that has not received sufficient attention. The mistake stems from Searle's use of the Church-Turing thesis. Searle assumes that the Church-Turing thesis licences the assumption that the Chinese room can run any program. I argue that it does not, and that this assumption is false. A number of possible objections are considered and rejected. My conclusion is that it is consistent with Searle's argument to hold onto the claim that understanding consists in the running of a program
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DOI 10.2307/30115172
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References found in this work BETA
John R. Searle (1980). Minds, Brains and Programs. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (3):417-57.
Daniel C. Dennett (1971). Intentional Systems. Journal of Philosophy 68 (February):87-106.
John Searle (1980). Intrinsic Intentionality. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (3):450.
Zenon W. Pylyshyn (1980). The ‘Causal Power’ of Machines. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3 (3):442.

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Citations of this work BETA
Mark Sprevak (2010). Computation, Individuation, and the Received View on Representation. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 41 (3):260-270.

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