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Mark A. Bedau [30]Mark Bedau [30]
  1. Weak Emergence.Mark A. Bedau - 1997 - Philosophical Perspectives 11 (s11):375-399.
    An innocent form of emergence—what I call "weak emergence"—is now a commonplace in a thriving interdisciplinary nexus of scientific activity—sometimes called the "sciences of complexity"—that include connectionist modelling, non-linear dynamics (popularly known as "chaos" theory), and artificial life.1 After defining it, illustrating it in two contexts, and reviewing the available evidence, I conclude that the scientific and philosophical prospects for weak emergence are bright.
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  2. Is Weak Emergence Just in the Mind?Mark A. Bedau - 2008 - Minds and Machines 18 (4):443-459.
    Weak emergence is the view that a system’s macro properties can be explained by its micro properties but only in an especially complicated way. This paper explains a version of weak emergence based on the notion of explanatory incompressibility and “crawling the causal web.” Then it examines three reasons why weak emergence might be thought to be just in the mind. The first reason is based on contrasting mere epistemological emergence with a form of ontological emergence that involves irreducible downward (...)
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  3.  42
    Weak Emergence.Mark A. Bedau - 1997 - Noûs 31 (S11):375-399.
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  4. Can Biological Teleology Be Naturalized?Mark Bedau - 1991 - Journal of Philosophy 88 (11):647-655.
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  5.  69
    Four Puzzles About Life.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    To surmount the notorious difficulties of defining life, we should evaluate theories of life not by whether they provide necessary and sufficient conditions for our current preconceptions about life but by how well they explain living phenomena and how satisfactorily they resolve puzzles about life. On these grounds, the theory of life as supple adaptation (Bedau 1996) gets support from its natural and compelling resolutions of the following four puzzles: (1) How are different forms of life at different levels of (...)
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  6. Downward Causation and the Autonomy of Weak Emergence.Mark A. Bedau - 2002 - Principia 6 (1):5-50.
    Weak emergence has been offered as an explication of the ubiquitous notion of emergence used in complexity science (Bedau 1997). After outlining the problem of emergence and comparing weak emergence with the two other main objectivist approaches to emergence, this paper explains a version of weak emergence and illustrates it with cellular automata. Then it explains the sort of downward causation and explanatory autonomy involved in weak emergence.
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  7. The Nature of Life: Classical and Contemporary Perspectives From Philosophy and Science.Mark Bedau & Carol Cleland (eds.) - 2010 - Cambridge University Press.
    Bringing together the latest scientific advances and some of the most enduring subtle philosophical puzzles and problems, this book collects original historical and contemporary sources to explore the wide range of issues surrounding the nature of life. Selections ranging from Aristotle and Descartes to Sagan and Dawkins are organised around four broad themes covering classical discussions of life, the origins and extent of natural life, contemporary artificial life creations and the definition and meaning of 'life' in its most general form. (...)
  8. Where's the Good in Teleology?Mark Bedau - 1992 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 52 (4):781-806.
  9. The Nature of Life.Mark A. Bedau - 1996 - In Margaret A. Boden (ed.), The Philosophy of Artificial Life. Oxford University Press. pp. 332--357.
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  10. Artificial Life.Mark Bedau - 2003 - In Luciano Floridi (ed.), The Blackwell Guide to the Philosophy of Computing and Information. Blackwell. pp. 505-512.
    Artificial life (also known as “ALife”) is a broad, interdisciplinary endeavor that studies life and life-like processes through simulation and synthesis. The goals of this activity include modelling and even creating life and life-like systems, as well as developing practical applications using intuitions and methods taken from living systems. Artificial life both illuminates traditional philosophical questions and raises new philosophical questions. Since both artificial life and philosophy investigate the essential nature of certain fundamental aspects of reality like life and adaptation, (...)
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  11.  46
    Three Illustrations of Artificial Life's Working Hypothesis.Mark A. Bedau - unknown
    Artificial life uses computer models to study the essential nature of the characteristic processes of complex adaptive systems proceses such as self-organization, adaptation, and evolution. Work in the field is guided by the working hypothesis that simple computer models can capture the essential nature of these processes. This hypothesis is illustrated by recent results with a simple population of computational agents whose sensorimotor functionality undergo open-ended adaptive evolution. These might illuminate three aspects of complex adaptive systems in general: punctuated equilibrium (...)
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  12.  7
    Downward Causation and the Autonomy of Weak Emergence.Mark Bedau - 2002 - Principia: An International Journal of Epistemology 6 (1):5-50.
    Weak emergence has been offered as an explication of the ubiquitous notion of emergence used m complexity science After outlining the problem of emergence and comparing weak emergence with the two other weak objectivist approaches to emergence, the paper explains a version of weak emergence and illustrates at with cellular automata Then it explains the sort of downward causation and explanatory autonomy involved m weak emergence.
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  13. Cryptographic Hash Functions Based on ALife.Mark A. Bedau, Richard Crandall & Michael J. Raven - 2009 - PSIpress.
    There is a long history of cryptographic hash functions, i.e. functions mapping variable-length strings to fixed-length strings, and such functions are also expected to enjoy certain security properties. Hash functions can be effected via modular arithmetic, permutation-based schemes, chaotic mixing, and so on. Herein we introduce the notion of an artificial-life (ALife) hash function (ALHF), whereby the requisite mixing action of a good hash function is accomplished via ALife rules that give rise to complex evolution of a given system. Various (...)
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  14.  62
    Goal-Directed Systems and the Good.Mark Bedau - 1992 - The Monist 75 (1):34-51.
    We can readily identify goal-directed systems and distinguish them from non-goal-directed systems. A woodpecker hunting for grubs is the first, a pendulum returning to rest is the second. But what is it to be a goal-directed system? Perhaps the dominant answer to this question, inspired by systems theories such as cybernetics, is that goal-directed systems are distinguished by their tendency to seek, aim at, or maintain some more-or-less easily identifiable goal. Cybernetics and the like would hold that physical systems subject (...)
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  15.  57
    Measurement of Evolutionary Activity, Teleology, and Life.Mark Bedau - unknown
    We consider how to discern whether or not evolution is taking place in an observed system. Evolution will be characterized in terms of a particular macroscopic behavior that emerges from microscopic organismic interaction. We de ne evolutionary activity as the rate at which useful genetic innovations are absorbed into the population. After measuring evolutionary activity in a simple model biosphere, we discuss applications to other systems. We argue that evolutionary activity provides an objective, quantitative interpretation of the intuitive idea of (...)
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  16.  13
    Bifurcation Structure in Diversity Dynamics.Mark Bedau - unknown
    ed individuals. Total diversity D is the sum of two fundamental principles governing broad classes of such..
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  17.  58
    A Functional Account of Degrees of Minimal Chemical Life.Mark A. Bedau - 2012 - Synthese 185 (1):73-88.
    This paper describes and defends the view that minimal chemical life essentially involves the chemical integration of three chemical functionalities: containment, metabolism, and program (Rasmussen et al. in Protocells: bridging nonliving and living matter, 2009a ). This view is illustrated and explained with the help of CMP and Rasmussen diagrams (Rasmussen et al. In: Rasmussen et al. (eds.) in Protocells: bridging nonliving and living matter, 71–100, 2009b ), both of which represent the key chemical functional dependencies among containment, metabolism, and (...)
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  18. Artificial Life: Organization, Adaptation and Complexity From the Bottom Up.Mark A. Bedau - 2003 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 7 (11):505-512.
  19.  59
    Philosophical Content and Method of Artificial Life.Mark A. Bedau - 1998 - In T. W. Bynum & J. Moor (eds.), The Digital Phoenix. Cambridge: Blackwell. pp. 135--152.
  20.  26
    The Evolution of Sensorimotor Functionality.Mark Bedau - unknown
    One can study the the evolution of sensorimotor functionality by synthesizing this process in an abstract arti cial life model, speci cally, a population of agents that interact with each other and with their environment in a way that allows natural selection implicitly to shape their sensorimotor couplings. The present paper de nes very general measures of environmental and sensory uncertainty, and of action's direct and indirect e ects on perception, and reports a series of observations of these quantities in (...)
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  21. Weak Emergence and Computer Simulation.Mark Bedau - 2011 - In Paul Humphreys & Cyrille Imbert (eds.), Models, Simulations, and Representations. Routledge.
     
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  22.  55
    Weak Emergence Drives the Science, Epistemology, and Metaphysics of Synthetic Biology.Mark A. Bedau - 2013 - Biological Theory 8 (4):334-345.
    Top-down synthetic biology makes partly synthetic cells by redesigning simple natural forms of life, and bottom-up synthetic biology aims to make fully synthetic cells using only entirely nonliving components. Within synthetic biology the notions of complexity and emergence are quite controversial, but the imprecision of key notions makes the discussion inconclusive. I employ a precise notion of weak emergent property, which is a robust characteristic of the behavior of complex bottom-up causal webs, where a complex causal web is one that (...)
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  23.  19
    The Intrinsic Scientific Value of Reprogramming Life.Mark A. Bedau - 2011 - Hastings Center Report 41 (4):29-31.
  24.  8
    Where's the Good in Teleology?Mark Bedau - 1992 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 52 (4):781-806.
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  25.  23
    Interdisciplinary Interconnections in Synthetic Biology.Ulrich Krohs & Mark A. Bedau - 2013 - Biological Theory 8 (4):313-317.
  26.  61
    Introduction to Philosophical Problems About Life.Mark A. Bedau - 2012 - Synthese 185 (1):1-3.
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  27. Naturalism and Teleology.Mark Bedau - 1993 - In Steven J. Wagner & Richard Warner (eds.), Journal of Philosophy. University of Notre Dame Press. pp. 23--51.
     
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  28.  5
    The Evolution of Complexity.Mark Bedau - 2009 - In Anouk Barberousse, M. Morange & T. Pradeau (eds.), Mapping the Future of Biology. Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science, vol 266. Dordrecht: Springer.
  29.  29
    Adaptation of Mutation Rates in a Simple Model of Evolution.Mark Bedau - unknown
    We have studied the adaptation of mutation rates in a simple model of evolution. The model consists of a two-dimensional world with a periodically replenished resource and a uctuating population of evolving agents whose survival and reproduction are an implicit a function of their success at nding resources and their internal metabolism. Earlier work suggested that mutation rate is a control parameter that governs a transition between two qualitatively di erent kinds of complex adaptive systems, and that the power of (...)
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  30. 3 Weak Emergence and Context-Sensitive Reduction.Mark A. Bedau - 2010 - In Antonella Corradini & Timothy O'Connor (eds.), Emergence in Science and Philosophy. Routledge. pp. 6--46.
     
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  31.  98
    Philosophical and Scientific Perspectives on Emergence.Hugues Bersini, Pasquale Stano, Pier Luigi Luisi & Mark A. Bedau - 2012 - Synthese 185 (2):165-169.
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  32.  24
    The Extent to Which Organisms Construct Their Environments.Mark A. Bedau - unknown
    Those interested in the relationship betw een environment structure and behavior — the topic of this special issue of Adaptive Behavior — w ill find much of value in Peter Godfrey-Smith's new book, Complexity and the Function of Mind in Nature (hereafter CFMN; all page citations are to CFMN unless otherw ise indicated). The w riting is clear and concise, aptly balancing precision and breadth, and a host of relevant issues are raised and advanced. Although my comments here w ill (...)
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  33.  36
    Against Mentalism in Teleology.Mark Bedau - 1990 - American Philosophical Quarterly 27 (1):61 - 70.
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  34.  24
    Testing Bottom-Up Models of Complex Citation Networks.Mark A. Bedau - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (5):1131-1143.
    The robust behavior of the patent citation network is a complex target of recent bottom-up models in science. This paper investigates the purpose and testing of three especially simple bottom-up models of the citation count distribution observed in the patent citation network. The complex causal webs in the models generate weakly emergent patterns of behavior, and this explains both the need for empirical observation of computer simulations of the models and the epistemic harmlessness of the resulting epistemic opacity.
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  35.  59
    Emergent Models of Supple Dynamics in Life and Mind.Mark A. Bedau - 1997 - Brain and Cognition 34:5-27.
    The dynamical patterns in mental phenomena have a characteristic suppleness&emdash;a looseness or softness that persistently resists precise formulation&emdash;which apparently underlies the frame problem of artificial intelligence. This suppleness also undermines contemporary philosophical functionalist attempts to define mental capacities. Living systems display an analogous form of supple dynamics. However, the supple dynamics of living systems have been captured in recent artificial life models, due to the emergent architecture of those models. This suggests that analogous emergent models might be able to explain (...)
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  36.  27
    Collective Intelligence of the Artificial Life Community on Its Own Successes, Failures, and Future.Steen Rasmussen, Michael J. Raven, Gordon N. Keating & Mark A. Bedau - 2003 - Artificial Life 9:207-235.
    We describe a novel Internet-based method for building consensus and clarifying con icts in large stakeholder groups facing complex issues, and we use the method to survey and map the scienti c and organizational perspectives of the arti cial life community during the Seventh International Conference on Arti cial Life (summer 2000). The issues addressed in this survey included arti cial life’s main successes, main failures, main open scienti c questions, and main strategies for the future, as well as the (...)
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  37.  90
    The Scientific and Philosophical Scope of Artificial Life.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    The new interdisciplinary science of artificial life has had a connection with the arts from its inception. This paper provides an overview of artificial life, reviews its key scientific challenges, and discusses its philosophical implications. It ends with a few words about the implications of artificial life for the arts.
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  38.  91
    Artificial Life Illuminates Human Hyper-Creativity.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    The aim of this chapter is to show how the technological research activity called “artificial life” is shedding new light on human creativity. Artificial life aims to understanding the fundamental behavior of life-like systems by synthesizing that behavior in artificial systems (more on artificial life below). One of the most interesting behaviors of living systems is their creativity. Biological creativity can be found in both individual living organisms and in the whole biosphere—the entire interconnected system comprised of all forms of (...)
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  39. Supple Laws in Psychology and Biology.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    The nature and status of psychological laws are a long-standing controversy. I will argue that part of the controversy stems from the distinctive nature of an important subset of those laws, which I’ll call “supple laws.” An emergent-model strategy taken by the new interdisciplinary field of artificial life provides a strikingly successful understanding of analogously supple laws in biology. So, after reviewing the failures of the two evident strategies for understanding supple psychological laws, I’ll turn for inspiration to emergent-models explanations (...)
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  40.  41
    Evolutionary Design of a DDPD Model of Ligation.Mark A. Bedau & Andrew Buchanan - unknown
    Ligation is a form of chemical self-assembly that involves dynamic formation of strong covalent bonds in the presence of weak associative forces. We study an extremely simple form of ligation by means of a dissipative particle dynamics (DPD) model extended to include the dynamic making and breaking of strong bonds, which we term dynamically bonding dissipative particle dynamics (DDPD). Then we use a chemical genetic algorithm (CGA) to optimize the model’s parameters to achieve a limited form of ligation of trimers—a (...)
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  41. Effect of Environmental Structure on Evolutionary Adaptation.Jeffrey A. Fletcher, Mark A. Bedau & Martin Zwick - 1998 - In R. Belew C. Adami (ed.), Artificial Life VI: Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Artificial Life. Cambridge: MIT Press. pp. 189-198.
    This paper investigates how environmental structure, given the innate properties of a population, affects the degree to which this population can adapt to the environment. The model we explore involves simple agents in a 2-d world which can sense a local food distribution and, as specified by their genomes, move to a new location and ingest the food there. Adaptation in this model consists of improving the genomic sensorimotor mapping so as to maximally exploit the environmental resources. We vary environmental (...)
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  42.  36
    Cartesian Interaction.Mark Bedau - 1986 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 10 (1):483-502.
  43.  24
    Exploring the Dynamics of Adaptation with Evolutionary Activity Plots.Seth Bullock & Mark A. Bedau - unknown
    Evolutionary activity statistics and their visualization are introduced, and their motivation is explained. Examples of their use are described, and their strengths and limitations are discussed. References to more extensive or general accounts of these techniques are provided.
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  44.  28
    Dependence of Adaptability on Environmental Structure in a Simple Evolutionary Model.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    This paper concerns the relationship between the detectable and useful structure in an environment and the degree to which a population can adapt to that environment. We explore the hypothesis that adaptability will depend unimodally on environmental variety, and we measure this component of environmental structure using the information-theoretic uncertainty of detectable environmental conditions. We de ne adaptability as the degree to which a certain kind of population successfully adapts to a certain kind of environment, and we measure adaptability by (...)
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  45.  19
    A Case Study in Objectifying Values in Science.Mark A. Bedau - 2004 - In Peter K. Machamer & Gereon Wolters (eds.), Science, Values, and Objectivity. University of Pittsburgh Press. pp. 190.
  46.  81
    Open Problems in Artificial Life Mark A. Bedau∗,†.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    artificial life, each of which is a grand challenge requiring a major advance on a fundamental issue for its solution. Each problem is briefly explained, and, where deemed helpful, some promising paths to its solution are indicated.
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  47.  73
    Financial Markets Can Be at Sub-Optimal Equilibria.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    We use game theory and Santa Fe Artificial Stock Market, an agent-based model of an evolving stock market, to study the optimal frequency for traders to revise their market forecasting rules. We discover two things: There is a unique strategic Nash equilibrium in the game of choosing forecast revision rates, and this equilibrium is sub-optimal in the sense that traders’ earnings are not maximized an the market is inefficient. This strategic equilibrium is due to an analogue of the prisoner’s dilemma; (...)
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  48.  31
    Living Technology Today and Tomorrow.Mark A. Bedau - 2009 - Technoetic Arts 7 (2):199-206.
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  49.  53
    Objectifying Values in Science: A Case Study.Mark Bedau - manuscript
    There are at least two different ways in which values and science can be connected. One is through the evaluation of science, and the other is through the scientific investigation of values. The evaluation of science is a non−scientific, political or ethical investigation of the practices of science. Various proposed and actual scientific practices call out for social and ethical evaluation. A few that have received recent attention are the human genome project, intelligence testing, and encryption algorithms. Such evaluations of (...)
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  50.  35
    May 17, 1999.Mark Bedau - unknown
    The document contains fourteen pictures of waves of evolutionary activity created by alleles in the sensory-motor strategies of agents in Packard's Scatter model.1 The quality of these waves indicate di erent kinds of evolutionary phenomena involving signi cant adaptations in sensory-motor rules. The purpose of this document is only to depict a variety of kinds of evolutionary phenomena, not to explain those phenomena a job for another occasion. The following papers contain more background on evolutionary activity waves and Packard's Scatter (...)
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