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David Hodgson

in The Mind Matters

Published in print February 1993 | ISBN: 9780198240686
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191680236 | DOI:

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

More and Different Information

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It is sometimes asserted that computers with consciousness may be developed, or even that they exist now; but, whether or not this is so, it is clear that existing computers operate by performing series of algorithms. And the carrying out of algorithms does not require consciousness: it is of the essence of algorithms that they can be performed mechanically and without consciousness. Accordingly, one step towards showing that the human brain-mind does not operate mechanistically is to show that it operates differently from a non-conscious computer. Just as consciousness itself may be either causally irrelevant, or else merely another level of description of non-conscious reality, it may be similar with consciousness-dependent information. However, the fact remains that the human brain-mind has this information, whereas a non-conscious computer cannot have it.

Keywords: consciousness; codes; Fred Dretske; digital information; mechanism

Chapter.  7201 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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