Synthese 153 (3):393-416 (2006)

Authors
Oron Shagrir
Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Abstract
The view that the brain is a sort of computer has functioned as a theoretical guideline both in cognitive science and, more recently, in neuroscience. But since we can view every physical system as a computer, it has been less than clear what this view amounts to. By considering in some detail a seminal study in computational neuroscience, I first suggest that neuroscientists invoke the computational outlook to explain regularities that are formulated in terms of the information content of electrical signals. I then indicate why computational theories have explanatory force with respect to these regularities:in a nutshell, they underscore correspondence relations between formal/mathematical properties of the electrical signals and formal/mathematical properties of the represented objects. I finally link my proposal to the philosophical thesis that content plays an essential role in computational taxonomy
Keywords POSTERIOR PARIETAL NEURONS   COMPUTATION   INDIVIDUALISM   PSYCHOLOGY   CONNECTIONISM   REDUCTIONISM   EXTERNALISM   NETWORK   SCIENCE   VISION
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11229-006-9099-8
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 50,287
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Vison.David Marr - 1982 - W. H. Freeman.

View all 54 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Representation in Cognitive Science.Nicholas Shea - 2018 - Oxford University Press.
Computing Mechanisms.Gualtiero Piccinini - 2007 - Philosophy of Science 74 (4):501-526.

View all 39 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Content, Computation and Externalism.Oron Shagrir - 2001 - Mind 110 (438):369-400.
A Clearer Vision.Lawrence A. Shapiro - 1997 - Philosophy of Science 64 (1):131-53.
Emdedded Systems Vs. Individualism.Michael Losonsky - 1995 - Minds and Machines 5 (3):357-71.
How Molecules Matter to Mental Computation.Paul Thagard - 2002 - Philosophy of Science 69 (3):497-518.
Computation Without Representation.Gualtiero Piccinini - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 137 (2):205-241.
Against Structuralist Theories of Computational Implementation.Michael Rescorla - 2013 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (4):681-707.
Computation, External Factors, and Cognitive Explanations.Amir Horowitz - 2007 - Philosophical Psychology 20 (1):65-80.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
171 ( #50,012 of 2,325,694 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #218,888 of 2,325,694 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes