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  1.  32
    Make Up Your Mind: Octopus Cognition and Hybrid Explanations.Sidney Carls-Diamante - 2019 - Synthese 199 (Suppl 1):143-158.
    In order to argue that cognitive science should be more accepting of explanatory plurality, this paper presents the control of fetching movements in the octopus as an exemplar of a cognitive process that comprises distinct and non-redundant representation-using and non-representational elements. Fetching is a type of movement that representational analyses can normally account for completely—but not in the case of the octopus. Instead, a comprehensive account of octopus fetching requires the non-overlapping use of both representational and non-representational explanatory frameworks. What (...)
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  2. The Octopus and the Unity of Consciousness.Sidney Carls-Diamante - 2017 - Biology and Philosophy 32 (6):1269-1287.
    If the octopus were conscious, what would its consciousness be like? This paper investigates the structure octopus consciousness, if existent, is likely to exhibit. Presupposing that the configuration of an organism’s consciousness is correlated with that of its nervous system, it is unlikely that the structure of the sort of conscious experience that would arise from the highly decentralized octopus nervous system would bear much resemblance to those of vertebrates. In particular, octopus consciousness may not exhibit unity, which has long (...)
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  3. The Argument From Evel (Knievel): Daredevils and the Free Energy Principle.Sidney Carls-Diamante - 2022 - Biology and Philosophy 37 (5):1-17.
    Much of the literature on the free energy principle has focused on how organisms maintain homeostasis amidst a constantly changing environment. A fundamental feature of the FEP is that biological entities are “hard-wired” towards self-preservation.However, contrary to this notion, there do exist organisms that appear to seek out rather than avoid conditions that pose an elevated risk of serious injury or death, thereby jeopardizing their physiological integrity. Borrowing a term used in 1990s popular culture to refer to stunt performers like (...)
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  4.  28
    Out on a Limb? On Multiple Cognitive Systems Within the Octopus Nervous System.Sidney Carls-Diamante - 2019 - Philosophical Psychology 32 (4):463-482.
    ABSTRACTThe idea that there can be only one cognitive system within any single given cognitive organism is an established albeit implicit one within cognitive science and related studies of the mind. The firm foothold of this notion is due largely to the immense corpus of empirical evidence for the correlation of a high level of cognitive sophistication with a centralized nervous system. However, it must be pointed out that these findings are sourced in large part from studies on vertebrates. This (...)
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    Repeating Patterns: Predictive Processing Suggests an Aesthetic Learning Role of the Basal Ganglia in Repetitive Stereotyped Behaviors.Blanca T. M. Spee, Ronald Sladky, Joerg Fingerhut, Alice Laciny, Christoph Kraus, Sidney Carls-Diamante, Christof Brücke, Matthew Pelowski & Marco Treven - 2022 - Frontiers in Psychology 13.
    Recurrent, unvarying, and seemingly purposeless patterns of action and cognition are part of normal development, but also feature prominently in several neuropsychiatric conditions. Repetitive stereotyped behaviors can be viewed as exaggerated forms of learned habits and frequently correlate with alterations in motor, limbic, and associative basal ganglia circuits. However, it is still unclear how altered basal ganglia feedback signals actually relate to the phenomenological variability of RSBs. Why do behaviorally overlapping phenomena sometimes require different treatment approaches−for example, sensory shielding strategies (...)
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  6. How to Operationalise Consciousness.Glenn Carruthers, Sidney Carls-Diamante, Linus Huang, Melanie Rosen & Elizabeth Schier - 2019 - Australian Journal of Psychology 71:390-410.
    Objective To review the way consciousness is operationalised in contemporary research, discuss strengths and weaknesses of current approaches and propose new measures. Method We first reviewed the literature pertaining to the phenomenal character of visual and self-consciousness as well as awareness of visual stimuli. We also reviewed more problematic cases of dreams and animal consciousness, specifically that of octopuses. Results Despite controversies, work in visual and self consciousness is highly developed and there are notable successes. Cases where experiences are not (...)
     
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  7.  4
    Explanation Within Arm’s Reach: A Predictive Processing Framework for Single Arm Use in Octopuses.Sidney Carls-Diamante - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-16.
    Octopuses are highly intelligent animals with vertebrate-like cognitive and behavioural repertoires. Despite these similarities, vertebrate-based models of cognition and behaviour cannot always be successfully applied to octopuses, due to the structural and functional characteristics that have evolved in their nervous system in response to the unique challenges posed by octopus morphology. For instance, the octopus brain does not support a somatotopic or point-for-point spatial map of the body—an important feature of vertebrate nervous systems. Thus, while octopuses are capable of motor (...)
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