This paper calls into question the growing tendency of quasi-absolutism within postmodern mainstream media discourse under the guise of objectivity. The tendency’s major aim is to ascribe more believability to its discourse by re-presenting that which it covers as the vehicle of objective truth to the mainstream audience. Two interweaving discourses have marked such objectivity: one in the form of indoctrinating and omnipresent narratives, which via effective propaganda become tantamount to ritualism, the other epitomised in the nostalgia for rationalisation, already (...) inherent in western positivist thought through the exponential increase of quasi-empiricism. Accordingly, what the media cover exists. What they do not remains in the order of myth. The article starts by rethinking objectivity within modern western academia, a discourse whose objectivity is already flawed from within. Then, with respect to human experience and media coverage, the paper concludes by raising the question of postmodern mainstream media’s substitution of religious quasi-absolutist narratives, be they secular or non-secular. Subjectivity thus emerges as the ultimate ground upon which our being may be legitimate. (shrink)
The detection of a human’s intended behavior is one of the most important skills that a social robot should have in order to become acceptable as a part of human society, because humans are used to understand the actions of other humans in a goal-directed manner and they will expect the social robot to behave similarly. A breakthrough in this area can advance several research branches related to social intelligence such as learning by imitation and mutual adaptation. To achieve this (...) goal the robot needs to integrate all possible evidence of intention and neglect the unintended behavior, and a complete solution should use low-level signal processing and high-level reasoning. This work explores the low-level signal processing part of the solution by proposing an interactive adaptive perception scheme that uses four important features of human behavior to amplify the signals originating from intended behavior with respect to signals originating from unintended behavior and other noise sources such as instrumental noise. This work follows the vision that intelligence is not only a function of a centralized sophisticated artificial brain, but can be presented in different forms in the entire robot including its perception and motion systems (the mind is not contained in the brain, but distributed in every cell in the body). A simple example of using the proposed scheme was implemented and the results of two experiments with it are also presented. (shrink)
The success of social robots in achieving natural coexistence with humans depends on both their level of autonomy and their interactive abilities. Although a lot of robotic architectures have been suggested and many researchers have focused on human–robot interaction, a robotic architecture that can effectively combine interactivity and autonomy is still unavailable. This paper contributes to the research efforts toward this architecture in the following ways. First a theoretical analysis is provided that leads to the notion of co-evolution between the (...) agent and its environment and with other agents as the condition needed to combine both autonomy and interactivity. The analysis also shows that the basic competencies needed to achieve the required level of autonomy and the envisioned level of interactivity are similar but not the same. Secondly nine specific requirements are then formalized that should be achieved by the architecture. Thirdly a robotic architecture that tries to achieve those requirements by utilizing two main theoretical hypothesis and several insights from social science, developmental psychology and neuroscience is detailed. Lastly two experiments with a humanoid robot and a simulated agent are reported to show the potential of the proposed architecture. (shrink)
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between metacognition as measured in real-life situations and IQ scores as reflected by performance on the Raven Standard Progressive Matrices Scale. It is also intended in this study to report on whether or not there were significant differences in performance on the metacognitive instrument among participants with typical development, deaf and hard-of-hearing, and low-achieving individuals with and without the influence of IQ. Analysis showed significant correlations between IQ, metacognitive test, and (...) metacognitive test scores divided by mean reaction time but not with reaction time itself. Results revealed the influence of IQ on metacognition being greater than the influence of metacognition on IQ. Results showed when controlling for the effect of IQ, differences among the three groups of participants on the metacognitive instrument become non-significant. Implications and suggestions are presented. (shrink)
Striedter's book offers precious insight into the comparative neuroanatomy of vertebrate brains, but it stops short of addressing what their evolution is all about: how effectively neural networks process information important for survival. To understand the principles of brain evolution, neuroanatomy needs to be combined not only with genetics, neurophysiology, and ethology, but also with quantitative network analyses.
In September President Bush reasserted his commitment to the "road map" for Middle East peace, launched in 2003 to achieve a comprehensive Israeli-Palestinian agreement by 2005. He called on Palestinians to renounce terrorism, implicitly urged world leaders to cut ties to Yasser Arafat, and appealed to Israel to end "the daily humiliation" of Palestinians. He framed his remarks within an overall appeal for democracy in the Arab world, citing Iraq as a model of the "transformational power of liberty." In (...) fact, for more than a year the US disastrously ignored Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani's pleas to set up elections. Real democracy is the willingness to accept results we may not like. US policy on a future Palestinian state is just as short-sighted. (shrink)