The ontological status of computers or what is a computer?

AI and Society 6 (4):305-323 (1992)
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The development of computers as ‘mind tools’ has generated intriguing and provocative views about their potential human-like qualities. In this paper an attempt is made to explore the ‘real’ nature of computers by an examination of three widely different perspective, (1) the common-sense view of computers as tools; (2) the provocative view of computers as persons; and (3) the challenging view of computers as texts. In the course of the discussion an extended critique of the use of anthropomorphic terms in relation to machines is conducted and the fundamental differences between human persons and machines is reasserted



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Minds, Brains and Science.John R. Searle - 1984 - Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
The Society Of Mind.Marvin Minsky - 1986 - Simon & Schuster.

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