Day 1: Can Computers Think Like Humans?: The Searle Chinese Room Thought Experiment | Samantha Bates | August 08, 2017


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Day 1: Can Computers Think Like Humans?: The Searle Chinese Room Thought Experiment

by Samantha Bates Show/Hide
  1. 1 Show/Hide More “Minds, Brains, and Programs” by John Searle (Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 1980).
    Searle presents a thought experiment reflecting on fundamental semantic and philosophical differences between human minds and computational processes. Is it theoretically possible for a computer to “think” like a human being?
  2. 2 Show/Hide More “The Chinese Room Argument” by David Cole (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Updated 2014).
    Read Sections 1, 3, Introduction to 4, 4.1-4.1.1, 5.1-5.3, Conclusion. The remainder is optional.
    An entry from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy outlining the Chinese Room argument and several significant critiques it has faced. What are the key issues at stake in the debate surrounding the Chinese Room argument?
  3. 3 Show/Hide More “Thinking Machines: The Search for Artificial Intelligence” by Jacob Roberts (Chemical Heritage Foundation, 2016).
    This piece outlines key milestones and ideas in the development of AI technology. How have public perceptions of AI development diverged from its realities? Have such perceptions changed over time?

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August 08, 2017

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Samantha Bates

Research Associate

Harvard Law School, Berkman Center

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