Could a machine think? Alan M. Turing vs. John R. Searle


“Could a machine think?” asks John R. Searle in his paper Minds, Brains, and Programs. He answers that “only a machine could think1, and only very special kinds of machines, namely brains.”2 The subject of this paper is the analysis of the aforementioned question through presentation of the symbol manipulation approach to intelligence and Searle's well-known criticism to this approach, namely the Chinese room argument. The examination of these issues leads to the systems reply of the Chinese room argument and tries to illustrate that Searle's response to the systems reply does not detract from the symbol manipulation approach.



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Mario Günther
Ludwig Maximilians Universität, München

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