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machine brains

Ray Scanlon rscanlon at wsg.net
Wed Mar 10 13:23:00 EST 1999

I started this thread without much purpose beyond showing off how smart I
am. It could have been subtitled, "the brain as a machine and a machine as a
brain". My thesis was simple: People who speak of the soul (mind) are not
helpful when the subject is the brain.

One response was that the soul (mind) is the only thing that is interesting.
Different people find different things of interest. I find the brain enough
for the present.

Another was that in explaining the brain we have done nothing until we have
explained the soul (mind). I answer that this may be true but it is
premature. I project that the first half of the next century will be spent
in explaining the brain. It is not until that is done that people will
complain that this is not enough and turn to religion to explain the soul
(mind). This will be the main theme of the second half of the century.

Most of the posts illuminate my argument that most would rather speak of the
soul (mind). People who know nothing of the brain are more than happy to
speak of their soul (mind), of which they know a great deal.

Cognitive scientists speak of the "binding problem" and of "corticothalamic
oscillations". They are of the opinion that they will explain the brain
through the soul (mind). In my opinion they are engaged in academic fraud.
Not that there is anything wrong with academic fraud.

Artificial intelligence has run off in full cry after "emotions". This will
lead to nothing even as all else has lead to nothing (except excuses).

Those interested in how the brain works might look at

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