Mind Design II: Philosophy, Psychology, and Artificial Intelligence

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Mind design is the endeavor to understand mind (thinking, intellect) in terms of its design (how it is built, how it works). Unlike traditional empirical psychology, it is more oriented toward the "how" than the "what." An experiment in mind design is more likely to be an attempt to build something and make it work―as in artificial intelligence―than to observe or analyze what already exists. Mind design is psychology by reverse engineering.

When Mind Design was first published in 1981, it became a classic in the then-nascent fields of cognitive science and AI. This second edition retains four landmark essays from the first, adding to them one earlier milestone (Turing's "Computing Machinery and Intelligence") and eleven more recent articles about connectionism, dynamical systems, and symbolic versus nonsymbolic models. The contributors are divided about evenly between philosophers and scientists. Yet all are "philosophical" in that they address fundamental issues and concepts; and all are "scientific" in that they are technically sophisticated and concerned with concrete empirical research.
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Artificial Intelligence: The Very Idea

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Amazon Price: $45.00 $36.51 You save: $8.49 (19%) (as of August 4, 2020 02:34 – Details). Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the Amazon site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

"Machines who think―how utterly preposterous," huff beleaguered humanists, defending their dwindling turf. "Artificial Intelligence―it's here and about to surpass our own," crow techno-visionaries, proclaiming dominion. It's so simple and obvious, each side maintains, only a fanatic could disagree.

Deciding where the truth lies between these two extremes is the main purpose of John Haugeland's marvelously lucid and witty book on what artificial intelligence is all about. Although presented entirely in non-technical terms, it neither oversimplifies the science nor evades the fundamental philosophical issues. Far from ducking the really hard questions, it takes them on, one by one.
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