Cybernetics and the Problem of Goals

Russian Studies in Philosophy 4 (4):49-55 (1966)
Goals, purposefulness, and appropriateness are philosophical categories that are rather widely employed in cybernetics. However, the needed exactness in the use of these concepts and, above all, of the concept "goal," is lacking. As a rule, writers employing that concept do not explain what precisely they designate as the "goal" in the functioning of a given cybernetic system. Does the system itself set the goal toward which the system "consciously" strives? Or does man set the goal for the automatic machine? Or is movement toward a goal a process differing from the conscious striving of man but having something in common with the latter?
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DOI 10.2753/RSP1061-1967040449
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