Optimization and simplicity: Computational vision and biological explanation

Synthese 107 (3):293 - 323 (1996)
David Marr's theory of vision has been a rich source of inspiration, fascination and confusion. I will suggest that some of this confusion can be traced to discrepancies between the way Marr developed his theory in practice and the way he suggested such a theory ought to be developed in his explicit metatheoretical remarks. I will address claims that Marr's theory may be seen as an optimizing theory, along with the attendant suggestion that optimizing assumptions may be inappropriate for cognitive mechanisms just as anti-adaptationists have argued they are inappropriate for other physiological mechanisms. I will discuss the nature of optimizing assumptions and theories. Considering various difficulties in identifying and assessing optimizing assumptions, I will suggest that Marr's theory is not purely an optimizing theory and that reaction to Marr on this issue prompts interesting considerations for the development of inter-disciplinary constraints in the cognitive and brain sciences.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/BF00413839
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 29,472
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Vision.Marr David - 1982 - Freeman.
The Sciences of the Artificial.Herbert A. Simon - 1969 - [Cambridge, M.I.T. Press.

View all 15 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Marr on Computational-Level Theories.Oron Shagrir - 2010 - Philosophy of Science 77 (4):477-500.
Herbert Simon's Silent Revolution.Werner Callebaut - 2007 - Biological Theory 2 (1):76-86.
``Two'' Many Optimalities.Oscar Vilarroya - 2002 - Biology and Philosophy 17 (2):251-270.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Simplicity, Cognition and Adaptation: Some Remarks on Marr's Theory of Vision.Daniel Gilman - 1994 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1994:454 - 464.
Marr's Computational Theory of Vision.P. S. Kitcher - 1988 - Philosophy of Science 55 (March):1-24.
Marr's Theory of Vision and the Argument From Success.Peter A. Morton - 1988 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1988:154 - 161.
Perception and Proper Explanatory Width.Mark Rollins - 1994 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1994:437 - 445.
Added to PP index

Total downloads
52 ( #106,773 of 2,210,836 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #207,068 of 2,210,836 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature