Presupposing no familiarity with the technical concepts of either philosophy or computing, this clear introduction reviews the progress made in AI since the inception of the field in 1956. Copeland goes on to analyze what those working in AI must achieve before they can claim to have built a thinking machine and appraises their prospects of succeeding. There are clear introductions to connectionism and to the language of thought hypothesis which weave together material from philosophy, artificial intelligence and neuroscience. John (...) Searle's attacks on AI and cognitive science are countered and close attention is given to foundational issues, including the nature of computation, Turing Machines, the Church-Turing Thesis and the difference between classical symbol processing and parallel distributed processing. The book also explores the possibility of machines having free will and consciousness and concludes with a discussion of in what sense the human brain may be a computer. (shrink)
A myth has arisen concerning Turing's paper of 1936, namely that Turing set forth a fundamental principle concerning the limits of what can be computed by machine - a myth that has passed into cognitive science and the philosophy of mind, to wide and pernicious effect. This supposed principle, sometimes incorrectly termed the 'Church-Turing thesis', is the claim that the class of functions that can be computed by machines is identical to the class of functions that can be computed by (...) Turing machines. In point of fact Turing himself nowhere endorses, nor even states, this claim (nor does Church). I describe a number of notional machines, both analogue and digital, that can compute more than a universal Turing machine. These machines are exemplars of the class of _nonclassical_ computing machines. Nothing known at present rules out the possibility that machines in this class will one day be built, nor that the brain itself is such a machine. These theoretical considerations undercut a number of foundational arguments that are commonly rehearsed in cognitive science, and gesture towards a new class of cognitive models. (shrink)
It is not widely realised that Turing was probably the first person to consider building computing machines out of simple, neuron-like elements connected together into networks in a largely random manner. Turing called his networks 'unorganised machines'. By the application of what he described as 'appropriate interference, mimicking education' an unorganised machine can be trained to perform any task that a Turing machine can carry out, provided the number of 'neurons' is sufficient. Turing proposed simulating both the behaviour of the (...) network and the training process by means of a computer program. We outline Turing's connectionist project of 1948. (shrink)
We describe an emerging field, that of nonclassical computability and nonclassical computing machinery. According to the nonclassicist, the set of well-defined computations is not exhausted by the computations that can be carried out by a Turing machine. We provide an overview of the field and a philosophical defence of its foundations.
The tape is divided into squares, each square bearing a single symbol—'0' or '1', for example. This tape is the machine's general-purpose storage medium: the machine is set in motion with its input inscribed on the tape, output is written onto the tape by the head, and the tape serves as a short-term working memory for the results of intermediate steps of the computation. The program governing the particular computation that the machine is to perform is also stored on the (...) tape. A small, fixed program that is 'hard-wired' into the head enables the head to read and execute the instructions of whatever program is on the tape. The machine's atomic operations are very simple—for example, 'move left one square', 'move right one square', 'identify the symbol currently beneath the head', 'write 1 on the square that is beneath the head', and 'write 0 on the square that is beneath the head'. Complexity of operation is achieved by the chaining together of large numbers of these simple atoms. Any universal Turing machine can be programmed to carry out any calculation that can be performed by a human mathematician working with paper and pencil in accordance with some algorithmic method. This is what is meant by calling these machines 'universal'. (shrink)
It is not widely realised that Turing was probably the first person to consider building computing machines out of simple, neuron-like elements connected together into networks in a largely random manner. Turing called his networks unorganised machines. By the application of what he described as appropriate interference, mimicking education an unorganised machine can be trained to perform any task that a Turing machine can carry out, provided the number of neurons is sufficient. Turing proposed simulating both the behaviour of the (...) network and the training process by means of a computer program. We outline Turing's connectionist project of 1948. (shrink)
In his PhD thesis (1938) Turing introduced what he described as 'a new kind of machine'. He called these 'O-machines'. The present paper employs Turing's concept against a number of currently fashionable positions in the philosophy of mind.
Accelerated Turing machines are Turing machines that perform tasks commonly regarded as impossible, such as computing the halting function. The existence of these notional machines has obvious implications concerning the theoretical limits of computability.
This volume celebrates the various facets of Alan Turing (1912–1954), the British mathematician and computing pioneer, widely considered as the father of computer science. It is aimed at the general reader, with additional notes and references for those who wish to explore the life and work of Turing more deeply. -/- The book is divided into eight parts, covering different aspects of Turing’s life and work. -/- Part I presents various biographical aspects of Turing, some from a personal point of (...) view. -/- Part II presents Turing’s universal machine (now known as a Turing machine), which provides a theoretical framework for reasoning about computation. His 1936 paper on this subject is widely seen as providing the starting point for the field of theoretical computer science. -/- Part III presents Turing’s working on codebreaking during World War II. While the War was a disastrous interlude for many, for Turing it provided a nationally important outlet for his creative genius. It is not an overstatement to say that without Turing, the War would probably have lasted longer, and may even have been lost by the Allies. The sensitive nature of Turning’s wartime work meant that much of this has been revealed only relatively recently. -/- Part IV presents Turing’s post-War work on computing, both at the National Physical Laboratory and at the University of Manchester. He made contributions to both hardware design, through the ACE computer at the NPL, and software, especially at Manchester. Part V covers Turing’s contribution to machine intelligence (now known as Artificial Intelligence or AI). Although Turing did not coin the term, he can be considered a founder of this field which is still active today, authoring a seminal paper in 1950. -/- Part VI covers morphogenesis, Turing’s last major scientific contribution, on the generation of seemingly random patterns in biology and on the mathematics behind such patterns. Interest in this area has increased rapidly in recent times in the field of bioinformatics, with Turing’s 1952 paper on this subject being frequently cited. -/- Part VII presents some of Turing’s mathematical influences and achievements. Turing was remarkably free of external influences, with few co-authors – Max Newman was an exception and acted as a mathematical mentor in both Cambridge and Manchester. -/- Part VIII considers Turing in a wider context, including his influence and legacy to science and in the public consciousness. -/- Reflecting Turing’s wide influence, the book includes contributions by authors from a wide variety of backgrounds. Contemporaries provide reminiscences, while there are perspectives by philosophers, mathematicians, computer scientists, historians of science, and museum curators. Some of the contributors gave presentations at Turing Centenary meetings in 2012 in Bletchley Park, King’s College Cambridge, and Oxford University, and several of the chapters in this volume are based on those presentations – some through transcription of the original talks, especially for Turing’s contemporaries, now aged in their 90s. Sadly, some contributors died before the publication of this book, hence its dedication to them. -/- For those interested in personal recollections, Chapters 2, 3, 11, 12, 16, 17, and 36 will be of interest. For philosophical aspects of Turing’s work, see Chapters 6, 7, 26–31, and 41. Mathematical perspectives can be found in Chapters 35 and 37–39. Historical perspectives can be found in Chapters 4, 8, 9, 10, 13–15, 18, 19, 21–25, 34, and 40. With respect to Turing’s body of work, the treatment in Parts II–VI is broadly chronological. We have attempted to be comprehensive with respect to all the important aspects of Turing’s achievements, and the book can be read cover to cover, or the chapters can be tackled individually if desired. There are cross-references between chapters where appropriate, and some chapters will inevitably overlap. -/- We hope that you enjoy this volume as part of your library and that you will dip into it whenever you wish to enter the multifaceted world of Alan Turing. (shrink)
We set the Turing Test in the historical context of the development of machine intelligence, describe the different forms of the test and its rationale, and counter common misinterpretations and objections. Recently published material by Turing casts fresh light on his thinking.
Alan Turing anticipated many areas of current research incomputer and cognitive science. This article outlines his contributionsto Artificial Intelligence, connectionism, hypercomputation, andArtificial Life, and also describes Turing's pioneering role in thedevelopment of electronic stored-program digital computers. It locatesthe origins of Artificial Intelligence in postwar Britain. It examinesthe intellectual connections between the work of Turing and ofWittgenstein in respect of their views on cognition, on machineintelligence, and on the relation between provability and truth. Wecriticise widespread and influential misunderstandings of theChurch–Turing thesis (...) and of the halting theorem. We also explore theidea of hypercomputation, outlining a number of notional machines thatcompute the uncomputable. (shrink)
Famous examples of conceivability arguments include (i) Descartes’ argument for mind-body dualism, (ii) Kripke's ‘modal argument’ against psychophysical identity theory, (iii) Chalmers’ ‘zombie argument’ against materialism, and (iv) modal versions of the ontological argument for theism. In this paper, we show that for any such conceivability argument, C, there is a corresponding ‘mirror argument’, M. M is deductively valid and has a conclusion that contradicts C's conclusion. Hence, a proponent of C—henceforth, a ‘conceivabilist’—can be warranted in holding that C's premises (...) are conjointly true only if she can find fault with one of M's premises. But M's premises are modelled on a pair of C's premises. The same reasoning that supports the latter supports the former. For this reason, a conceivabilist can repudiate M's premises only on pain of severely undermining C's premises. We conclude on this basis that all conceivability arguments, including each of (i)–(iv), are fallacious. (shrink)
Fifty years ago this month[[June]], in the Computing Machine Laboratory at Manchester University, the world's first electronic stored-program computer performed its first calculation. The tiny program, stored on the face of a cathode ray tube, was just 17 instructions long. Electronic engineers Freddie Williams and Tom Kilburn built the Manchester computer in accordance with fundamental ideas explained to them by Max Newman, professor of mathematics at Manchester. The computer fell sideways out of research that nobody could have guessed would have (...) any practical application. The initial idea germinated thirteen years earlier in the head of Alan Turing, who was working on a recherché problem in mathematical logic. While thinking about this problem Turing dreamed up an abstract machine, nowadays known simply as the 'universal Turing machine' and which, as he put it, would compute 'all numbers which could naturally be regarded as computable'. The machine consisted of a memory in.. (shrink)
Alan M. Turing, pioneer of computing and WWII codebreaker, is one of the most important and influential thinkers of the twentieth century. In this volume for the first time his key writings are made available to a broad, non-specialist readership. They make fascinating reading both in their own right and for their historic significance: contemporary computational theory, cognitive science, artificial intelligence, and artificial life all spring from this ground-breaking work, which is also rich in philosophical and logical insight. An introduction (...) by leading Turing expert Jack Copeland provides the background and guides the reader through the selection. About Alan Turing Alan Turing FRS OBE, (1912-1954) studied mathematics at King's College, Cambridge. He was elected a Fellow of King's in March 1935, at the age of only 22. In the same year he invented the abstract computing machines - now known simply as Turing machines - on which all subsequent stored-program digital computers are modelled. During 1936-1938 Turing continued his studies, now at Princeton University. He completed a PhD in mathematical logic, analysing the notion of 'intuition' in mathematics and introducing the idea of oracular computation, now fundamental in mathematical recursion theory. An 'oracle' is an abstract device able to solve mathematical problems too difficult for the universal Turing machine. In the summer of 1938 Turing returned to his Fellowship at King's. When WWII started in 1939 he joined the wartime headquarters of the Government Code and Cypher School (GC&CS) at Bletchley Park, Buckinghamshire. Building on earlier work by Polish cryptanalysts, Turing contributed crucially to the design of electro-mechanical machines ('bombes') used to decipher Enigma, the code by means of which the German armed forces sought to protect their radio communications. Turing's work on the version of Enigma used by the German navy was vital to the battle for supremacy in the North Atlantic. He also contributed to the attack on the cyphers known as 'Fish'. Based on binary teleprinter code, Fish was used during the latter part of the war in preference to morse-based Enigma for the encryption of high-level signals, for example messages from Hitler and other members of the German High Command. It is estimated that the work of GC&CS shortened the war in Europe by at least two years. Turing received the Order of the British Empire for the part he played. In 1945, the war over, Turing was recruited to the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) in London, his brief to design and develop an electronic computer - a concrete form of the universal Turing machine. Turing's report setting out his design for the Automatic Computing Engine (ACE) was the first relatively complete specification of an electronic stored-program general-purpose digital computer. Delays beyond Turing's control resulted in NPL's losing the race to build the world's first working electronic stored-program digital computer - an honour that went to the Royal Society Computing Machine Laboratory at Manchester University, in June 1948. Discouraged by the delays at NPL, Turing took up the Deputy Directorship of the Royal Society Computing Machine Laboratory in that year. Turing was a founding father of modern cognitive science and a leading early exponent of the hypothesis that the human brain is in large part a digital computing machine, theorising that the cortex at birth is an 'unorganised machine' which through 'training' becomes organised 'into a universal machine or something like it'. He also pioneered Artificial Intelligence. Turing spent the rest of his short career at Manchester University, being appointed to a specially created Readership in the Theory of Computing in May 1953. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in March 1951 (a high honour). (shrink)
The tense tree method extends Jeffrey’s well-known formulation of classical propositional logic to tense logic (Jeffrey 1991).1 Tense trees combine pure tense logic with features of Prior’s U-calculi (where ‘U’ is the earlier-than relation; see Prior 1967 and the Introduction to this volume). The tree method has a number of virtues: trees are well suited to computational applications; semantically, the tree systems presented here are no less illuminating than model theory; the metatheory associated with tree formulations is often more tractable (...) than that required in a model-theoretic setting; and last but not least the tree method is ideal for pedagogical purposes. (shrink)
In this article the central philosophical issues concerning human-level artificial intelligence (AI) are presented. AI largely changed direction in the 1980s and 1990s, concentrating on building domain-specific systems and on sub-goals such as self-organization, self-repair, and reliability. Computer scientists aimed to construct intelligence amplifiers for human beings, rather than imitation humans. Turing based his test on a computer-imitates-human game, describing three versions of this game in 1948, 1950, and 1952. The famous version appears in a 1950 article in Mind, ‘Computing (...) Machinery and Intelligence’ (Turing 1950). The interpretation of Turing's test is that it provides an operational definition of intelligence (or thinking) in machines, in terms of behavior. ‘Intelligent Machinery’ sets out the thesis that whether an entity is intelligent is determined in part by our responses to the entity's behavior. Wittgenstein frequently employed the idea of a human being acting like a reliable machine. A ‘living reading-machine’ is a human being or other creature that is given written signs, for example Chinese characters, arithmetical symbols, logical symbols, or musical notation, and who produces text spoken aloud, solutions to arithmetical problems, and proofs of logical theorems. Wittgenstein mentions that an entity that manipulates symbols genuinely reads only if he or she has a particular history, involving learning and training, and participates in a social environment that includes normative constraints and further uses of the symbols. (shrink)
We discuss, first, TUring's role in the development of the computer; second, the early history of Artificial Intelligence (to 1956); and third, TUring's fa- mous imitation game, now universally known as the TUring test, which he proposed in cameo form in 1948 and then more fully in 1950 and 1952. Various objections have been raised to Turing's test: we describe some of the most prominent and explain why, in our view, they fail.
This is a detective story. The starting-point is a philosophical discussion in 1949, where Alan Turing mentioned a machine whose program, he said, would in practice be “impossible to find.” Turing used his unbreakable machine example to defeat an argument against the possibility of artificial intelligence. Yet he gave few clues as to how the program worked. What was its structure such that it could defy analysis for (he said) “a thousand years”? Our suggestion is that the program simulated a (...) type of cipher device, and was perhaps connected to Turing’s postwar work for GCHQ (the UK equivalent of the NSA). We also investigate the machine’s implications for current brain simulation projects. (shrink)
Traditional accounts hold that reference consists in a relation between the mind and an object; the relation is effected by a mental act and mediated by internal mental contents (internal representations). Contemporary theories as diverse as Fodor’s [Fodor, J.A., 1987. Psychosemantics: The Problem of Meaning in the Philosophy of Mind. MIT Press, Cambridge, MA] language of thought hypothesis, Dretske’s [Dretske, F., 1988. Explaining Behaviour: Reasons in a World of Causes. MIT Press, Cambridge, MA] informational semantics and Millikan’s [Millikan, R.G., 1984. (...) Language, Thought and Other Biological Categories: New Foundations for Realism. MIT Press, Cambridge, MA] teleosemantics share this act– content–object picture (which was also held by several early modern philosophers, in particular Locke). The core of the traditional view is the thesis that reference and intentionality are relational (‘thesis RR’). Although deeply problematic, RR is entrenched also in psychology, linguistics, cognitive science and Artificial Intelligence. Using for the most part arguments employed by Wittgenstein, we mount a case against RR and advance a deflationary account of reference and intentionality according to which neither is relational. (shrink)