Situating Machine Intelligence Within the Cognitive Ecology of the Internet

Minds and Machines 27 (2):357-380 (2017)

Authors
Paul Smart
University of Southampton
Abstract
The Internet is an important focus of attention for the philosophy of mind and cognitive science communities. This is partly because the Internet serves as an important part of the material environment in which a broad array of human cognitive and epistemic activities are situated. The Internet can thus be seen as an important part of the ‘cognitive ecology’ that helps to shape, support and realize aspects of human cognizing. Much of the previous philosophical work in this area has sought to analyze the cognitive significance of the Internet from the perspective of human cognition. There has, as such, been little effort to assess the cognitive significance of the Internet from the perspective of ‘machine cognition’. This is unfortunate, because the Internet is likely to exert a significant influence on the shape of machine intelligence. The present paper attempts to evaluate the extent to which the Internet serves as a form of cognitive ecology for synthetic forms of intelligence. In particular, the phenomenon of Internet-situated machine intelligence is analyzed from the perspective of a number of approaches that are typically subsumed under the heading of situated cognition. These include extended, embedded, scaffolded and embodied approaches to cognition. For each of these approaches, the Internet is shown to be of potential relevance to the development and operation of machine-based cognitive capabilities. Such insights help us to appreciate the role of the Internet in advancing the current state-of-the-art in machine intelligence.
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DOI 10.1007/s11023-016-9416-z
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References found in this work BETA

The Extended Mind.Andy Clark & David J. Chalmers - 1998 - Analysis 58 (1):7-19.

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Citations of this work BETA

Immaterial Engagement: Human Agency and the Cognitive Ecology of the Internet.Robert W. Clowes - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (1):259-279.
Where the Smart Things Are: Social Machines and the Internet of Things.Paul Smart, Aastha Madaan & Wendy Hall - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (3):551-575.

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