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Mark and Mazviita discuss the philosophy and science of mind, and how to think about computations with respect to understanding minds. Current approaches to explaining brain function are dominated by computational models and the computer metaphor for brain and mind. But there are alternative ways to think about the relation between computations and brain function, which we explore in the discussion. We also talk about the role of philosophy broadly and with respect to mind sciences, pluralism and perspectival approaches to truth and understanding, the prospects and desirability of naturalizing representations (accounting for how brain representations relate to the natural world), and much more.
- Mark’s website.
- Mazviita’s University of Edinburgh page.
- Twitter (Mark): @msprevak.
- Mazviita’s previous Brain Inspired episode:
- The related book we discuss:
0:00 – Intro
5:26 – Philosophy contributing to mind science
15:45 – Trend toward hyperspecialization
21:38 – Practice-focused philosophy of science
30:42 – Computationalism
33:05 – Philosophy of mind: identity theory, functionalism
38:18 – Computations as descriptions
41:27 – Pluralism and perspectivalism
54:18 – How much of brain function is computation?
1:02:11 – AI as computationalism
1:13:28 – Naturalizing representations
1:30:08 – Are you doing it right?