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How to Knit Your Own Markov Blanket

Philosophy and Predictive Processing (2017)

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  1. From filters to fillers: an active inference approach to body image distortion in the selfie era.Safae Essafi Tremblay & Pierre Poirier - 2020 - AI and Society:1-16.
    Advances in artificial intelligence, as well as its increased presence in everyday life, have brought the emergence of many new phenomena, including an intriguing appearance of what seems to be a variant of body dysmorphic disorder, coined “Snapchat dysmorphia”. Body dysmorphic disorder is a DSM-5 psychiatric disorder defined as a preoccupation with one or more perceived defects or flaws in physical appearance that are not observable or appear slight to others. Snapchat dysmorphia is fueled by automated selfie filters that reflect (...)
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  • Cultural Blankets: Epistemological Pluralism in the Evolutionary Epistemology of Mechanisms.Pierre Poirier, Luc Faucher & Jean-Nicolas Bourdon - forthcoming - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie:1-16.
    In a recently published paper, we argued that theories of cultural evolution can gain explanatory power by being more pluralistic. In his reply to it, Dennett agreed that more pluralism is needed. Our paper’s main point was to urge cultural evolutionists to get their hands dirty by describing the fine details of cultural products and by striving to offer detailed and, when explanatory, varied algorithms or mechanisms to account for them. While Dennett’s latest work on cultural evolution does marvelously well (...)
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  • TTOM in Action: Refining the Variational Approach to Cognition and Culture.Samuel P. L. Veissière, Axel Constant, Maxwell J. D. Ramstead, Karl J. Friston & Laurence J. Kirmayer - 2020 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 43.
    The target article “Thinking Through Other Minds” offered an account of the distinctively human capacity to acquire cultural knowledge, norms, and practices. To this end, we leveraged recent ideas from theoretical neurobiology to understand the human mind in social and cultural contexts. Our aim was both synthetic – building an integrative model adequate to account for key features of cultural learning and adaptation; and prescriptive – showing how the tools developed to explain brain dynamics can be applied to the emergence (...)
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  • The Projective Consciousness Model and Phenomenal Selfhood.Kenneth Williford, Daniel Bennequin, Karl Friston & David Rudrauf - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9.
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  • Multiscale Integration: Beyond Internalism and Externalism.Maxwell J. D. Ramstead, Michael D. Kirchhoff, Axel Constant & Karl J. Friston - forthcoming - Synthese:1-30.
    We present a multiscale integrationist interpretation of the boundaries of cognitive systems, using the Markov blanket formalism of the variational free energy principle. This interpretation is intended as a corrective for the philosophical debate over internalist and externalist interpretations of cognitive boundaries; we stake out a compromise position. We first survey key principles of new radical views of cognition. We then describe an internalist interpretation premised on the Markov blanket formalism. Having reviewed these accounts, we develop our positive multiscale account. (...)
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  • A Theory of Predictive Dissonance: Predictive Processing Presents a New Take on Cognitive Dissonance.Roope Oskari Kaaronen - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9.
    This article is a comparative study between predictive processing (PP, or predictive coding) and cognitive dissonance (CD) theory. The theory of CD, one of the most influential and extensively studied theories in social psychology, is shown to be highly compatible with recent developments in PP. This is particularly evident in the notion that both theories deal with strategies to reduce perceived error signals. However, reasons exist to update the theory of CD to one of “predictive dissonance.” First, the hierarchical PP (...)
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  • First Principles in the Life Sciences: The Free-Energy Principle, Organicism, and Mechanism.Matteo Colombo & Cory Wright - forthcoming - Synthese:1-26.
    The free-energy principle claims that biological systems behave adaptively maintaining their physical integrity only if they minimize the free energy of their sensory states. Originally proposed to account for perception, learning, and action, the free-energy principle has been applied to the evolution, development, morphology, and function of the brain, and has been called a “postulate,” a “mandatory principle,” and an “imperative.” While it might afford a theoretical foundation for understanding the complex relationship between physical environment, life, and mind, its epistemic (...)
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  • Just How Conservative is Conservative Predictive Processing?Paweł Gładziejewski - 2017 - Hybris. Revista de Filosofía 38:98-122.
    Predictive Processing (PP) framework construes perception and action (and perhaps other cognitive phenomena) as a matter of minimizing prediction error, i.e. the mismatch between the sensory input and sensory predictions generated by a hierarchically organized statistical model. There is a question of how PP fits into the debate between traditional, neurocentric and representation-heavy approaches in cognitive science and those approaches that see cognition as embodied, environmentally embedded, extended and (largely) representation-free. In the present paper, I aim to investigate and clarify (...)
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  • Hierarchical Markov Blankets and Adaptive Active Inference. [REVIEW]Michael David Kirchhoff - 2018 - Physics of Life Reviews 24.
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  • Am I Self-Conscious?Karl Friston - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9.
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  • Phenomenology and Cognitive Science: Don’T Fear the Reductionist Bogey-Man.Jakob Hohwy - 2018 - Australasian Philosophical Review 2 (2):138-144.
    Shaun Gallagher calls for a radical rethinking of the concept of nature and he resists reduction of phenomenology to computational-neural science. However, classic, reductionist science, at least in contemporary computational guise, has the resources to accommodate insights from transcendental phenomenology. Reductionism should be embraced, not feared.
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  • Rethinking Again.Shaun Gallagher - 2018 - Australasian Philosophical Review 2 (2):234-245.
    Volume 2, Issue 2, June 2018, Page 234-245.
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  • How to Determine the Boundaries of the Mind: A Markov Blanket Proposal.Michael D. Kirchhoff & Julian Kiverstein - forthcoming - Synthese.
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  • Computational Enactivism Under the Free Energy Principle.Tomasz Korbak - forthcoming - Synthese:1-21.
    In this paper, I argue that enactivism and computationalism—two seemingly incompatible research traditions in modern cognitive science—can be fruitfully reconciled under the framework of the free energy principle. FEP holds that cognitive systems encode generative models of their niches and cognition can be understood in terms of minimizing the free energy of these models. There are two philosophical interpretations of this picture. A computationalist will argue that as FEP claims that Bayesian inference underpins both perception and action, it entails a (...)
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  • Predictive Processing and the Representation Wars.Daniel Williams - 2018 - Minds and Machines 28 (1):141-172.
    Clark has recently suggested that predictive processing advances a theory of neural function with the resources to put an ecumenical end to the “representation wars” of recent cognitive science. In this paper I defend and develop this suggestion. First, I broaden the representation wars to include three foundational challenges to representational cognitive science. Second, I articulate three features of predictive processing’s account of internal representation that distinguish it from more orthodox representationalist frameworks. Specifically, I argue that it posits a resemblance-based (...)
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