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  1. A statistical referential theory of content: Using information theory to account for misrepresentation.Marius Usher - 2001 - Mind and Language 16 (3):331-334.
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  • The Representational Theory of Mind: An Introduction.Kim Sterelny - 1994 - Philosophical Quarterly 44 (175):252-254.
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  • Computation, individuation, and the received view on representation.Mark Sprevak - 2010 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 41 (3):260-270.
    The ‘received view’ about computation is that all computations must involve representational content. Egan and Piccinini argue against the received view. In this paper, I focus on Egan’s arguments, claiming that they fall short of establishing that computations do not involve representational content. I provide positive arguments explaining why computation has to involve representational content, and how that representational content may be of any type. I also argue that there is no need for computational psychology to be individualistic. Finally, I (...)
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  • Naturalizing the Mind.David Sosa & Fred Dretske - 1997 - Philosophical Review 106 (3):429.
    Aware that the representational thesis is more plausible for the attitudinal than for the phenomenal, Dretske courageously focuses on sensory experience, where progress in our philosophical understanding of the mental has lagged. His view, essentially, is that what makes any mental state what it is is not so much what it's like as what it's about.
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  • Reward Prediction Error Signals are Meta‐Representational.Nicholas Shea - 2014 - Noûs 48 (2):314-341.
    1. Introduction 2. Reward-Guided Decision Making 3. Content in the Model 4. How to Deflate a Metarepresentational Reading Proust and Carruthers on metacognitive feelings 5. A Deflationary Treatment of RPEs? 5.1 Dispensing with prediction errors 5.2 What is use of the RPE focused on? 5.3 Alternative explanations—worldly correlates 5.4 Contrast cases 6. Conclusion Appendix: Temporal Difference Learning Algorithms.
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  • Naturalising Representational Content.Nicholas Shea - 2013 - Philosophy Compass 8 (5):496-509.
    This paper sets out a view about the explanatory role of representational content and advocates one approach to naturalising content – to giving a naturalistic account of what makes an entity a representation and in virtue of what it has the content it does. It argues for pluralism about the metaphysics of content and suggests that a good strategy is to ask the content question with respect to a variety of predictively successful information processing models in experimental psychology and cognitive (...)
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  • Neural signalling of probabilistic vectors.Nicholas Shea - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (5):902-913.
    Recent work combining cognitive neuroscience with computational modelling suggests that distributed patterns of neural firing may represent probability distributions. This paper asks: what makes it the case that distributed patterns of firing, as well as carrying information about (correlating with) probability distributions over worldly parameters, represent such distributions? In examples of probabilistic population coding, it is the way information is used in downstream processing so as to lead to successful behaviour. In these cases content depends on factors beyond bare information, (...)
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  • Content, computation and externalism.Oron Shagrir - 2001 - Mind 110 (438):369-400.
    The paper presents an extended argument for the claim that mental content impacts the computational individuation of a cognitive system (section 2). The argument starts with the observation that a cognitive system may simultaneously implement a variety of different syntactic structures, but that the computational identity of a cognitive system is given by only one of these implemented syntactic structures. It is then asked what are the features that determine which of implemented syntactic structures is the computational structure of the (...)
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  • Experiential Awareness: Do You Prefer “It” to “Me”?Miguel Ángel Sebastián - 2012 - Philosophical Topics 40 (2):155-177.
    In having an experience one is aware of having it. Having an experience requires some form of access to one's own state, which distinguishes phenomenally conscious mental states from other kinds of mental states. Until very recently, Higher-Order (HO) theories were the only game in town aiming at offering a full-fledged account of this form of awareness within the analytical tradition. Independently of any objections that HO theories face, First/Same-Order (F/SO) theorists need to offer an account of such access to (...)
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  • Information as a Probabilistic Difference Maker.Andrea Scarantino - 2015 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 93 (3):419-443.
    By virtue of what do alarm calls and facial expressions carry natural information? The answer I defend in this paper is that they carry natural information by virtue of changing the probabilities of various states of affairs, relative to background data. The Probabilistic Difference Maker Theory of natural information that I introduce here is inspired by Dretske's [1981] seminal analysis of natural information, but parts ways with it by eschewing the requirements that information transmission must be nomically underwritten, mind-independent, and (...)
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  • The best test theory of extension: First principle(s).Robert D. Rupert - 1999 - Mind and Language 14 (3):321–355.
    This paper presents the leading idea of my doctoral dissertation and thus has been shaped by the reactions of all the members of my thesis committee: Charles Chastain, Walter Edelberg, W. Kent Wilson, Dorothy Grover, and Charles Marks. I am especially grateful for the help of Professors Chastain, Edelberg, and Wilson; each worked closely with me at one stage or another in the development of the ideas contained in the present work. Shorter versions of this paper were presented at the (...)
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  • The Nature of Consciousness.David M. Rosenthal - 2004 - Mind 113 (451):581-588.
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  • Computation without representation.Gualtiero Piccinini - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 137 (2):205-241.
    The received view is that computational states are individuated at least in part by their semantic properties. I offer an alternative, according to which computational states are individuated by their functional properties. Functional properties are specified by a mechanistic explanation without appealing to any semantic properties. The primary purpose of this paper is to formulate the alternative view of computational individuation, point out that it supports a robust notion of computational explanation, and defend it on the grounds of how computational (...)
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  • Computation as Involving Content: A Response to Egan.Christopher Peacocke - 1999 - Mind and Language 14 (2):195-202.
    Only computational explanations of a content‐involving sort can answer certain ‘how’‐questions; can support content‐involving counterfactuals; and have the generality characteristic of psychological explanations. Purely formal characteriza‐tions of computations have none of these properties, and do not determine content. These points apply not only to psychological explanation, but to Turing machines themselves. Computational explanations which involve content are not opposed to naturalism. They are also required if we are to explain the content‐involving properties of mental states.
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  • Philosophical Naturalism. Philosophical Naturalism.David Papineau - 1993 - Blackwell.
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  • Mindreading: An Integrated Account of Pretence, Self-Awareness and Understanding Other Minds.J. Heal - 2005 - Mind 114 (453):181-184.
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  • Mindreading: An Integrated Account of Pretence, Self-Awareness, and Understanding Other Minds.Shaun Nichols & Stephen P. Stich - 2003 - Oxford University Press.
    The everyday capacity to understand the mind, or 'mindreading', plays an enormous role in our ordinary lives. Shaun Nichols and Stephen Stich provide a detailed and integrated account of the intricate web of mental components underlying this fascinating and multifarious skill. The imagination, they argue, is essential to understanding others, and there are special cognitive mechanisms for understanding oneself. The account that emerges has broad implications for longstanding philosophical debates over the status of folk psychology. Mindreading is another trailblazing volume (...)
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  • Misrepresenting and malfunctioning.Karen Neander - 1995 - Philosophical Studies 79 (2):109-41.
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  • Misrepresenting & Malfunctioning.Karen Neander - 1995 - Philosophical Studies 79 (2):109-141.
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  • A Modal Theory of Function.Bence Nanay - 2010 - Journal of Philosophy 107 (8):412-431.
    The function of a trait token is usually defined in terms of some properties of other (past, present, future) tokens of the same trait type. I argue that this strategy is problematic, as trait types are (at least partly) individuated by their functional properties, which would lead to circularity. In order to avoid this problem, I suggest a way to define the function of a trait token in terms of the properties of the very same trait token. To able to (...)
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  • An organizational account of biological functions.Matteo Mossio, Cristian Saborido & Alvaro Moreno - 2009 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (4):813-841.
    In this paper, we develop an organizational account that defines biological functions as causal relations subject to closure in living systems, interpreted as the most typical example of organizationally closed and differentiated self-maintaining systems. We argue that this account adequately grounds the teleological and normative dimensions of functions in the current organization of a system, insofar as it provides an explanation for the existence of the function bearer and, at the same time, identifies in a non-arbitrary way the norms that (...)
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  • Language, Thought and Other Biological Categories: New Foundations for Realism.Kent Bach - 1985 - Philosophy of Science 52 (3):477-478.
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  • In defense of proper functions.Ruth Garrett Millikan - 1989 - Philosophy of Science 56 (June):288-302.
    I defend the historical definition of "function" originally given in my Language, Thought and Other Biological Categories (1984a). The definition was not offered in the spirit of conceptual analysis but is more akin to a theoretical definition of "function". A major theme is that nonhistorical analyses of "function" fail to deal adequately with items that are not capable of performing their functions.
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  • A model for visual shape recognition.Peter M. Milner - 1974 - Psychological Review 81 (6):521-535.
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  • Teleosemantics and Indeterminacy.Manolo Martínez - 2013 - Dialectica 67 (4):427-453.
    In the first part of the paper, I present a framework for the description and evaluation of teleosemantic theories of intentionality, and use it to argue that several different objections to these theories (the various indeterminacy and adequacy problems) are, in a certain precise sense, manifestations of the same underlying issue. I then use the framework to show that Millikan's biosemantics, her own recent declarations to the contrary notwithtanding, presents indeterminacy. In the second part, I develop a novel teleosemantic proposal (...)
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  • Psychosemantics: The Problem of Meaning in the Philosophy of Mind.Dan Lloyd - 1991 - Philosophical Review 100 (2):289.
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  • Getting the most out of Shannon information.Oliver M. Lean - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (3):395-413.
    Shannon information is commonly assumed to be the wrong way in which to conceive of information in most biological contexts. Since the theory deals only in correlations between systems, the argument goes, it can apply to any and all causal interactions that affect a biological outcome. Since informational language is generally confined to only certain kinds of biological process, such as gene expression and hormone signalling, Shannon information is thought to be unable to account for this restriction. It is often (...)
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  • Functional analysis and proper functions.Paul E. Griffiths - 1993 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 44 (3):409-422.
    The etiological approach to ‘proper functions’ in biology can be strengthened by relating it to Robert Cummins' general treatment of function ascription. The proper functions of a biological trait are the functions it is assigned in a Cummins-style functional explanation of the fitness of ancestors. These functions figure in selective explanations of the trait. It is also argued that some recent etiological theories include inaccurate accounts of selective explanation in biology. Finally, a generalization of the notion of selective explanation allows (...)
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  • How we know our minds: The illusion of first-person knowledge of intentionality.Alison Gopnik - 1993 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 16 (1):1-14.
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  • Simulating Minds: The Philosophy, Psychology, and Neuroscience of Mindreading.Amy Coplan - 2008 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 66 (1):94-97.
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  • Complexity and the Function of Mind in Nature.D. M. Walsh - 1997 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 48 (4):613-617.
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  • Explaining computation without semantics: Keeping it simple.Nir Fresco - 2010 - Minds and Machines 20 (2):165-181.
    This paper deals with the question: how is computation best individuated? -/- 1. The semantic view of computation: computation is best individuated by its semantic properties. 2. The causal view of computation: computation is best individuated by its causal properties. 3. The functional view of computation: computation is best individuated by its functional properties. -/- Some scientific theories explain the capacities of brains by appealing to computations that they supposedly perform. The reason for that is usually that computation is individuated (...)
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  • The Elm and the Expert: Mentalese and Its Semantics.Jerry A. Fodor - 1994 - MIT Press.
    This book is largely a reconsideration of the arguments that are supposed to ground this consensus.
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  • The Elm and the Expert.Steven Horst - 1996 - Philosophical Quarterly 46 (183):243-246.
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  • Psychosemantics: The Problem of Meaning in the Philosophy of Mind.Jerry A. Fodor - 1987 - MIT Press.
    Preface 1 Introduction: The Persistence of the Attitudes 2 Individualism and Supervenience 3 Meaning Holism 4 Meaning and the World Order Epilogue Creation Myth Appendix Why There Still Has to be a Language of Thought Notes References Author Index.
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  • A Theory of Content and Other Essays.Ruth Garrett Millikan - 1990 - Philosophical Review 101 (4):898-901.
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  • A Theory of Content and Other Essays.Jerry A. Fodor - 1990 - MIT Press.
    Preface and Acknowledgments Introduction PART I Intentionality Chapter 1 Fodor’ Guide to Mental Representation: The Intelligent Auntie’s Vade-Mecum Chapter 2 Semantics, Wisconsin Style Chapter 3 A Theory of Content, I: The Problem Chapter 4 A Theory of Content, II: The Theory Chapter 5 Making Mind Matter More Chapter 6 Substitution Arguments and the Individuation of Beliefs Chapter 7 Stephen Schiffer’s Dark Night of The Soul: A Review of Remnants of Meaning PART II Modularity Chapter 8 Précis of The Modularity of (...)
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  • Semiosis in cognitive systems: a neural approach to the problem of meaning. [REVIEW]Eliano Pessa & Graziano Terenzi - 2007 - Mind and Society 6 (2):189-209.
    This paper deals with the problem of understanding semiosis and meaning in cognitive systems. To this aim we argue for a unified two-factor account according to which both external and internal information are non-independent aspects of meaning, thus contributing as a whole in determining its nature. To overcome the difficulties stemming from this approach we put forward a theoretical scheme based on the definition of a suitable representation space endowed with a set of transformations, and we show how it can (...)
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  • Knowledge and the flow of information.F. Dretske - 1989 - Trans/Form/Ação 12:133-139.
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  • Functional analysis.Robert Cummins - 1975 - Journal of Philosophy 72 (November):741-64.
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  • Consumers Need Information: supplementing teleosemantics with an input condition.Nicholas Shea - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 75 (2):404-435.
    The success of a piece of behaviour is often explained by its being caused by a true representation (similarly, failure falsity). In some simple organisms, success is just survival and reproduction. Scientists explain why a piece of behaviour helped the organism to survive and reproduce by adverting to the behaviour’s having been caused by a true representation. That usage should, if possible, be vindicated by an adequate naturalistic theory of content. Teleosemantics cannot do so, when it is applied to simple (...)
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  • How we know our own minds: The relationship between mindreading and metacognition.Peter Carruthers - 2009 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 32 (2):121-138.
    Four different accounts of the relationship between third-person mindreading and first-person metacognition are compared and evaluated. While three of them endorse the existence of introspection for propositional attitudes, the fourth claims that our knowledge of our own attitudes results from turning our mindreading capacities upon ourselves. Section 1 of this target article introduces the four accounts. Section 2 develops the “mindreading is prior” model in more detail, showing how it predicts introspection for perceptual and quasi-perceptual mental events while claiming that (...)
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  • A teleosemantic approach to information in the brain.Rosa Cao - 2012 - Biology and Philosophy 27 (1):49-71.
    The brain is often taken to be a paradigmatic example of a signaling system with semantic and representational properties, in which neurons are senders and receivers of information carried in action potentials. A closer look at this picture shows that it is not as appealing as it might initially seem in explaining the function of the brain. Working from several sender-receiver models within the teleosemantic framework, I will first argue that two requirements must be met for a system to support (...)
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  • Propositional Content in Signalling Systems.Jonathan Birch - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 171 (3):493-512.
    Skyrms, building on the work of Dretske, has recently developed a novel information-theoretic account of propositional content in simple signalling systems. Information-theoretic accounts of content traditionally struggle to accommodate the possibility of misrepresentation, and I show that Skyrms’s account is no exception. I proceed to argue, however, that a modified version of Skyrms’s account can overcome this problem. On my proposed account, the propositional content of a signal is determined not by the information that it actually carries, but by the (...)
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  • The Domain of Folk Psychology.José Luis Bermúdez - 2003 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 53:25-48.
    My topic in this paper is social understanding. By this I mean the cognitive skills underlying social behaviour and social coordination. Normal, encultured, non-autistic and non-brain-damaged human beings are capable of an impressive degree of social coordination. We navigate the social world with a level of skill and dexterity fully comparable to that which we manifest in navigating the physical world. In neither sphere, one might think, would it be a trivial matter to identify the various competences which underly this (...)
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  • The domain of folk psychology.José Luis Bermúdez - 2003 - In Anthony O'Hear (ed.), Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement. Cambridge University Press. pp. 25–48.
    My topic in this paper is social understanding. By this I mean the cognitive skills underlying social behaviour and social coordination. Normal, encultured, non-autistic and non-brain-damaged human beings are capable of an impressive degree of social coordination. We navigate the social world with a level of skill and dexterity fully comparable to that which we manifest in navigating the physical world. In neither sphere, one might think, would it be a trivial matter to identify the various competences which underly this (...)
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  • Teleosemantic modeling of cognitive representations.Marc Artiga - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (4):483-505.
    Naturalistic theories of representation seek to specify the conditions that must be met for an entity to represent another entity. Although these approaches have been relatively successful in certain areas, such as communication theory or genetics, many doubt that they can be employed to naturalize complex cognitive representations. In this essay I identify some of the difficulties for developing a teleosemantic theory of cognitive representations and provide a strategy for accommodating them: to look into models of signaling in evolutionary game (...)
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  • Teleosemantics without natural selection.Marshall Abrams - 2005 - Biology and Philosophy 20 (1):97-116.
    Ruth Millikan and others advocate theories which attempt to naturalize wide mental content (e.g. beliefs.
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  • A Materialist Theory of the Mind.[author unknown] - 1968 - Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia 27 (2):217-217.
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  • Information: a very short introduction.Luciano Floridi - 2010 - Oxford University Press.
    This book helps us understand the true meaning of the concept and how it can be used to understand our world.
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