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Thu Aug 2, 2012, 02:10 AM

Presentation Videos for Alan Turing Centenary Institute on Evolution and Consciousness

The conference was June 29 through July 11,
the videos are in mp4 format: http://users.ecs.soton.ac.uk/harnad/TuringEvolutionConsciousness.htm

There are discussions of each presentation here: http://turingc.blogspot.ca/

From Bjoern Brembs blog:

Presentation Videos for Alan Turing Summer Institute on Consciousness

At this great meeting in Montreal I won't have to blog a lot about each presentation, as most presentations will be videotaped and made available soon after. The first presentation (by Daniel Dennett) is already up can can be downloaded from organizer Stevan Harnad's program page. Just click on the "video" link behind each presentation to see what we are learning here.

All of the talks are of very high quality, interesting and highly educational, but from the first session, the one I chaired, I'd especially recommend the talks by Joseph LeDoux and Jorge Armony as particularly worth watching.

Posted on Saturday 30 June 2012

Bjoern Brembs has uploaded his presentation and panel discussion to youtube:

Presentation on behavioral freedom in Drosophila with panel discussion on YouTube

As promised, find below the video of my talk at the Montreal Summer Institute on Consciousness. The abstract and some discussion can be found on the conference blog. 

There is also a video of the subsequent panel discussion with all the speakers of that day (except Wolf Singer who could not attend the panel):

Posted on Sunday 08 July 2012

Here is a description of the conference:

Alan Turing Summer Institute on Consciousness


I’m now at the Turing Centenary Institute on the Evolution and Function of Consciousness, slated to speak about our work on Thursday (see our program). The list of speakers is packed with luminaries like Daniel Dennett, Antonio Damasio, John Searle, Simon-Baron Cohen, Wolf Singer, Alfred Mele or Patrick Haggard, and the best thing is: you don’t have to be in Montreal with us to learn about the things we learn about – they will tape each lecture and put it online the next day (watch this space for the link).

What will this summer school be about? Here are some excerpts from their press release with some interjected statements of mine:
Alan Turing, born 100 years ago, invented the computer and computation and helped saved Europe by decoding Nazi message during World War I. He also proposed a simple way to test scientific explanations of how the mind works: the Turing test. If we can design a robot which is able to do anything and everything that a real human being can do – and can do it so well that people cannot even tell it apart from a real person, then we have explained how the mind works, and the robot has a mind. The challenge of passing the Turing test has created a new family of sciences called the cognitive sciences.

Hmm, I’m sure the discussion there will be interesting, as there are already a few things I wouldn’t necessarily agree with in this first paragraph. Only because a robot passes the Turing-Test, doesn’t mean it has a mind. Obviously, the definition of what constitutes a mind will be central for this discussion (and maybe a screening of “Blade Runner”, but alas, they will show other films):
But what does it mean to have a mind? Turing’s robot can do anything and everything we can do, but does that mean it has a mind? Could it not be a “Zombie,” that acts exactly the same way as we do, but it has no mind? What does it mean to have no mind? A rock has no mind. A waterfall has no mind. A toaster has no mind. And surely computers have no minds. What do all these mindless things lack?


Posted on Saturday 30 June 2012

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