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machine brains

Ray Scanlon rscanlon at wsg.net
Thu Feb 25 20:35:25 EST 1999



Michael Edelman wrote in message <36D40248.45F3D1CB at mich.com>...


   (snip)
>
>This is the point at which I find myself shaking my head. Who is aware of
>thinking? When you say "subjectively" you imply a subject. Who is that
>subject?
>
>You have not argued for the non-existence of mind or self-awareness. You
>merely
>assert that it does not exist.

Nope. The brain exists in the material universe, the mind in the spiritual
universe. I enjoy both but I keep them separate.

Your entire post was an example of what I am attacking, the desire to talk
about the mind rather than the brain. The title of the thread is "machine
brains". Why can't we just talk about the brain as a machine and leave the
mind out of it. Talk about the role of the reticular nucleus of the thalamus
in inserting extra synaptic events between sensory input and motor output.

When sensory neuron is efferent on a motor neuron, as it is in some
jellyfish, there seems to be no problem in comprehending the neural net.
When the interneuron is interposed, as it is in some other jellyfish,
difficulties arise. (But only the tiniest of difficulties.) As the
interneurons proliferate in the vertebrates, why do we say that a difference
arises? In mammals the reticular nucleus appears, synaptic events are
indefinitely added yet the nervous system is still a machine. A machine is
comprehensible, possibly most difficult but still comprehensible by man.

Ray
Those interested in how the brain works might look at
www.wsg.net/~rscanlon/brain.html






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