evolutionary and computational theories of mind

mat mats_trash at hotmail.com
Wed Jan 16 19:13:26 EST 2002

"yan king yin" <y.k.y@(dont spam)lycos.com> wrote in message news:<gzd18.931$na5.122679 at news.xtra.co.nz>...
> The brain has acquired the capacity of language and thinking as
> a result of evolution. There should be no doubt about this.
> "Everything in nature does not make sense except under the
> light of evolution." I have no doubts about that. Is that what
> you're asking about?

Maybe, but were they actually the attributes selected for?  Did we get
to where we are because of language or something totally different and
language just happened accidentally? Language and evolution are
actually the subject of much debate becuase its not that easy to
explain the former in terms of the latter when you get down to the
nitty gritty of grammatical structure.

> More interesting would be the question of what exactly are
> the circuits in the brain that have evolved.
Why should there be computational ciruits in the brain? Computers have
only been around for 50 years, might nature not have given us
something slightly more honed?  The computational theory makes the
very big suppoition that the outputs we get from our minds are the
result of logical operations upon the sensory stuff that went in. 
However, the output only seems *right* becuase everyone's is generally
the same or similar.  If everyone behaved totally differently then
that would be reagrded as the *right* output too.

> ---------------------------------------------------------
> From: "mat" <mats_trash at hotmail.com>
> > what are people's views on the darwinian and computational approaches
> > to explaining the mind?  Evolutionary psychology is very popular these
> > days, with the way our minds work explained in terms of how they
> > provided survival advantage over the eons. Computational theories
> > suggest that there is a syntax or language of thought using which our
> > minds can extract meaning an construct ideas about the world.  Usually
> > these two approaches are viewed as approximately the same.  Evolution
> > has honed the computational 'modules' of our mind.  I just wonder what
> > other people's views are on this.

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