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Artificial consciousness

Artificial consciousness

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Encyclopedia
Artificial consciousness (AC), also known as machine consciousness (MC) or synthetic consciousness, is a field related to artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence is the intelligence of machines and the branch of computer science that aims to create it. AI textbooks define the field as "the study and design of intelligent agents" where an intelligent agent is a system that perceives its environment and takes actions that maximize its...

 and cognitive robotics
Cognitive robotics
a robot is a robot device that is built from inanimate matter. Its behavior in response to the environment is deterministic, based on how the robot was designed. Cognition is the process of acquiring and using knowledge about the world for goal-oriented purposes, such as survival...

 whose aim is to define that which would have to be synthesized were consciousness to be found in an engineered artifact .

Neuroscience
Neuroscience
Neuroscience is the scientific study of the nervous system. Traditionally, neuroscience has been seen as a branch of biology. However, it is currently an interdisciplinary science that collaborates with other fields such as chemistry, computer science, engineering, linguistics, mathematics,...

 hypothesizes that consciousness
Consciousness
Consciousness is a term that refers to the relationship between the mind and the world with which it interacts. It has been defined as: subjectivity, awareness, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind...

 is generated by the interoperation of various parts of the brain
Brain
The brain is the center of the nervous system in all vertebrate and most invertebrate animals—only a few primitive invertebrates such as sponges, jellyfish, sea squirts and starfishes do not have one. It is located in the head, usually close to primary sensory apparatus such as vision, hearing,...

, called the neural correlates of consciousness
Neural correlates of consciousness
The neural correlates of consciousness constitute the minimal set of neuronal events and mechanisms sufficient for a specific conscious percept. Neuroscientists use empirical approaches to discover neural correlates of subjective phenomena...

 or NCC. Proponents of AC believe it is possible to construct machines (e.g., computer
Computer
A computer is a programmable machine designed to sequentially and automatically carry out a sequence of arithmetic or logical operations. The particular sequence of operations can be changed readily, allowing the computer to solve more than one kind of problem...

 systems) that can emulate this NCC interoperation.

Philosophical views of artificial consciousness


As there are many designations of consciousness, there are many potential types of AC. In the philosophical literature, perhaps the most common taxonomy of consciousness is into "access" and "phenomenal" variants. Access consciousness concerns those aspects of experience that are amenable to a functional description, while phenomenal consciousness concerns those aspects of experience that seem to defy functional depiction, instead being characterized qualitatively in terms of “raw feels”, “what it is like” or qualia
Qualia
Qualia , singular "quale" , from a Latin word meaning for "what sort" or "what kind," is a term used in philosophy to refer to subjective conscious experiences as 'raw feels'. Examples of qualia are the pain of a headache, the taste of wine, the experience of taking a recreational drug, or the...

 (Block, 1997). Weaker versions of AC only require that functional, “access consciousness” be artificially instantiated. Stronger versions of AC hold that all aspects of consciousness are instantiable in artificial, machine systems.

For example, when the visual cortex of the brain processes neural impulses from the eyes and determines that the image consists of a spherical object in a rectangular box, this is access consciousness and is not philosophically difficult, because such pattern recognition
Pattern recognition
In machine learning, pattern recognition is the assignment of some sort of output value to a given input value , according to some specific algorithm. An example of pattern recognition is classification, which attempts to assign each input value to one of a given set of classes...

 has been simulated by computer programs. But how to emulate phenomena such as pain, or anger, or motivation, or attention, or feeling of relevance, or modeling other people's intentions, or anticipating consequences of alternative actions, or inventing or rediscovering new concepts or tools or procedures without reading about them or being taught?

The debate over the plausibility of artificial consciousness


There is considerable debate over the plausibility of AC. Some theorists (e.g., biological naturalists
Biological naturalism
Biological naturalism is a monist theory about the relationship between mind and body , and hence an approach to the mind-body problem...

) hold that consciousness can only be instantiated in biological systems (Searle, 2004). A slightly more liberal view, though one still skeptical of AC, is held by theorists (e.g., type-identity theorists
Type physicalism
Type physicalism is a physicalist theory, in philosophy of mind. It asserts that mental events can be grouped into types, and can then be correlated with types of physical events in the brain...

) who hold that consciousness can only be realized in particular physical systems because consciousness has properties that necessarily depend on physical constitution (Block, 1978; Bickle, 2003). Their skepticism rests on the fact that there are many physical asymmetries between natural, organic systems and artificially constructed (e.g., computer) systems, and it seems reasonable to think these differences would be relevant to the generation of conscious states.

However, other theorists are more sanguine about the plausibility of AC. For some theorists (e.g., functionalists
Functionalism (philosophy of mind)
Functionalism is a theory of the mind in contemporary philosophy, developed largely as an alternative to both the identity theory of mind and behaviourism. Its core idea is that mental states are constituted solely by their functional role — that is, they are causal relations to other mental...

), who define mental states in terms of causal roles, any system that can instantiate the same pattern of causal roles, regardless of physical constitution, will instantiate the same mental states, including consciousness (Putnam, 1967). Along these lines, some theorists (e.g., David Chalmers
David Chalmers
David John Chalmers is an Australian philosopher specializing in the area of philosophy of mind and philosophy of language, whose recent work concerns verbal disputes. He is Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Centre for Consciousness at the Australian National University...

) have proposed that consciousness can be realized in properly designed and programmed computers.

Chalmers' argument for artificial consciousness


One of the most explicit arguments for the plausibility of AC comes from David Chalmers. His proposal, found within his manuscript A Computational Foundation for the Study of Cognition, is roughly that computers perform computations and the right kinds of computations are sufficient for the possession of a conscious mind. In outline, he defends his claim thus: Computers perform computations. Computations can capture other systems’ abstract causal organization. Mental properties are nothing over and above abstract causal organization. Therefore, computers running the right kind of computations will instantiate mental properties.

The most controversial part of Chalmers’ proposal is that mental properties are “organizationally invariant;” i.e., nothing over and above abstract causal organization. His rough argument for which is the following. Mental properties are of two kinds, psychological and phenomenological. Psychological properties, such as belief and perception, are those that are “characterized by their causal role” within an overall causal system. He adverts to the work of Armstrong (1968) and Lewis (1972) in claiming that “[s]ystems with the same causal topology…will share their psychological properties.” Phenomenological properties, on the other hand, are not prima facie definable in terms of their causal roles. Establishing that phenomenological properties are amenable to individuation by causal role therefore requires argument. Chalmers provides his “Dancing Qualia Argument” for this purpose.

Chalmers begins by assuming that agents with identical causal organizations could have different experiences in virtue of having different material constitutions (silicon vs. neurons, e.g.). He then asks us to conceive of changing one agent into the other by the replacement of parts (neural parts replaced by silicon, say) while preserving its causal organization. Ex hypothesi, the experience of the agent under transformation would change (as the parts were replaced), but there would be no change in causal topology and therefore no means whereby the agent could “notice” the shift in experience. To imagine, however, that it makes sense to say an agent could have qualitative changes in experience but be unable to notice changes in experience is absurd. Given the absurdity of the conclusion, Chalmers’ rejects the initial premise that agents with identical causal organization can have different experiences. Thus, by his Dancing Qualia Argument, Chalmers defends his view that phenomenological properties are organizationally invariant.

Critics of AC can object that Chalmers begs the question in assuming that all mental properties are sufficiently captured by abstract causal organization. It remains a contentious proposal. Regardless, it is important for laying a philosophical foundation for the plausibility of AC.

Ethics of artificial consciousness



If it was certain that a particular machine was conscious its rights would be an ethical
Ethics
Ethics, also known as moral philosophy, is a branch of philosophy that addresses questions about morality—that is, concepts such as good and evil, right and wrong, virtue and vice, justice and crime, etc.Major branches of ethics include:...

 issue that would need to be assessed (e.g. what rights it would have under law). For example a conscious computer that was owned and used as a tool or central computer of a building or large machine is a particular ambiguity. Should law
Law
Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior, wherever possible. It shapes politics, economics and society in numerous ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus...

s be made for such a case, consciousness would also require a legal definition (for example a machine's ability to experience pleasure
Pleasure
Pleasure describes the broad class of mental states that humans and other animals experience as positive, enjoyable, or worth seeking. It includes more specific mental states such as happiness, entertainment, enjoyment, ecstasy, and euphoria...

 or pain
Pain
Pain is an unpleasant sensation often caused by intense or damaging stimuli such as stubbing a toe, burning a finger, putting iodine on a cut, and bumping the "funny bone."...

, known as sentience
Sentience
Sentience is the ability to feel, perceive or be conscious, or to have subjective experiences. Eighteenth century philosophers used the concept to distinguish the ability to think from the ability to feel . In modern western philosophy, sentience is the ability to have sensations or experiences...

). Because artificial consciousness is still largely a theoretical subject such ethics have not been discussed or developed to a great extent, though it has often been a theme in fiction (see below).

The rules for the 2003 Loebner Prize
Loebner prize
The Loebner Prize is an annual competition in artificial intelligence that awards prizes to the chatterbot considered by the judges to be the most human-like. The format of the competition is that of a standard Turing test. In each round, a human judge simultaneously holds textual conversations...

 competition explicitly addressed the question of robot rights:
61. If, in any given year, a publicly available open source Entry entered by the University of Surrey or the Cambridge Center wins the Silver Medal or the Gold Medal, then the Medal and the Cash Award will be awarded to the body responsible for the development of that Entry. If no such body can be identified, or if there is disagreement among two or more claimants, the Medal and the Cash Award will be held in trust until such time as the Entry may legally possess, either in the United States of America or in the venue of the contest, the Cash Award and Gold Medal in its own right.

Consciousness in digital computers


There are various aspects of consciousness generally deemed necessary for a machine to be artificially conscious. A variety of functions in which consciousness plays a role were suggested by Bernard Baars
Bernard Baars
Bernard J. Baars is a former Senior Fellow in Theoretical Neurobiology at The Neurosciences Institute in La Jolla, CA., and is currently an Affiliated Fellow there. He is best known as the originator of the global workspace theory, a theory of human cognitive architecture and consciousness...

 (Baars 1988) and others. The functions of consciousness suggested by Bernard Baars are Definition and Context Setting, Adaptation and Learning, Editing, Flagging and Debugging, Recruiting and Control, Prioritizing and Access-Control, Decision-making or Executive Function, Analogy-forming Function, Metacognitive and Self-monitoring Function, Autoprogramming and Self-maintenance Function, and Definitional and Context-setting Function. Igor Aleksander suggested 12 principles for Artificial Consciousness (Aleksander 1995) and these are: The Brain is a State Machine, Inner Neuron Partitioning, Conscious and Unconscious States, Perceptual Learning and Memory, Prediction, The Awareness of Self, Representation of Meaning, Learning Utterances, Learning Language, Will, Instinct, and Emotion. The aim of AC is to define whether and how these and other aspects of consciousness can be synthesized in an engineered artifact such as a digital computer. This list is not exhaustive; there are many others not covered.

Awareness
Awareness
Awareness
Awareness is the state or ability to perceive, to feel, or to be conscious of events, objects or sensory patterns. In this level of consciousness, sense data can be confirmed by an observer without necessarily implying understanding. More broadly, it is the state or quality of being aware of...

 could be one required aspect, but there are many problems with the exact definition of awareness. The results of the experiments of neuroscanning on monkeys suggest that a process, not only a state or object, activates neurons. Awareness includes creating and testing alternative models of each process based on the information received through the senses or imagined, and is also useful for making predictions. Such model creating includes modeling of the physical world, modeling of one's own internal states and processes, and modeling of other conscious entities.

Learning
Learning is also considered necessary for AC. By Bernard Baars, conscious experience is needed to represent and adapt to novel and significant events (Baars 1988). By Axel Cleeremans
Axel Cleeremans
Axel Cleeremans is a Research Director with the National Fund for Scientific Research and a professor of cognitive science with the Department of Psychology of the Université Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels....

 and Luis Jiménez, learning is defined as "a set of philogenetically [sic] advanced adaptation processes that critically depend on an evolved sensitivity to subjective experience so as to enable agents to afford flexible control over their actions in complex, unpredictable environments" (Cleeremans 2001).

Anticipation
The ability to predict (or anticipate) foreseeable events is considered important for AC by Igor Aleksander
Igor Aleksander
Igor Aleksander FREng is an emeritus professor of Neural Systems Engineering in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Imperial College London...

. The emergentist multiple drafts principle
Multiple Drafts Model
Daniel Dennett's multiple drafts model of consciousness is a physicalist theory of consciousness based upon cognitivism, which views the mind in terms of information processing. The theory is described in depth in his book, Consciousness Explained, published in 1991...

 proposed by Daniel Dennett
Daniel Dennett
Daniel Clement Dennett is an American philosopher, writer and cognitive scientist whose research centers on the philosophy of mind, philosophy of science and philosophy of biology, particularly as those fields relate to evolutionary biology and cognitive science. He is currently the Co-director of...

 in Consciousness Explained
Consciousness Explained
Consciousness Explained is a 1991 book by the American philosopher Daniel Dennett which offers an account of how consciousness arises from interaction of physical and cognitive processes in the brain.-Synopsis:...

may be useful for prediction: it involves the evaluation and selection of the most appropriate "draft" to fit the current environment. Anticipation includes prediction of consequences of one's own proposed actions and prediction of consequences of probable actions by other entities.

Relationships between real world states are mirrored in the state structure of a conscious organism enabling the organism to predict events. An artificially conscious machine should be able to anticipate events correctly in order to be ready to respond to them when they occur or to take premptive action to avert anticipated events. The implication here is that the machine needs real-time components, making it possible to demonstrate that it possesses artificial consciousness in the present and future and not just in the past. In order to do this, a conscious machine must make coherent predictions in changing, novel environments, not only in worlds with fixed rules like a chess board, to simulate and control the real world.

Subjective experience
Subjective experiences or qualia
Qualia
Qualia , singular "quale" , from a Latin word meaning for "what sort" or "what kind," is a term used in philosophy to refer to subjective conscious experiences as 'raw feels'. Examples of qualia are the pain of a headache, the taste of wine, the experience of taking a recreational drug, or the...

 are widely considered to be the hard problem of consciousness
Hard problem of consciousness
The hard problem of consciousness is the problem of explaining how and why we have qualitative phenomenal experiences. David Chalmers contrasts this with the "easy problems" of explaining the ability to discriminate, integrate information, report mental states, focus attention, etc...

. Indeed, it is held to pose a challenge to physicalism
Physicalism
Physicalism is a philosophical position holding that everything which exists is no more extensive than its physical properties; that is, that there are no kinds of things other than physical things...

, let alone computationalism. On the other hand, there is a similar problem with uncertainty principle
Uncertainty principle
In quantum mechanics, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle states a fundamental limit on the accuracy with which certain pairs of physical properties of a particle, such as position and momentum, can be simultaneously known...

 in physics, which has not made the research in physics impossible.

Franklin's Intelligent Distribution Agent


Stan Franklin
Stan Franklin
Stan Franklin is an American scientist and W. Harry Feinstone Interdisciplinary Research Professor at the and co-director of the Institute of Intelligent Systems. He is the author of Artificial Minds and mental father of IDA and its successor LIDA, both computational implementations of...

 (1995, 2003) defines an autonomous agent
Autonomous agent
An autonomous agent is an intelligent agent operating on an owner's behalf but without any interference of that ownership entity. An intelligent agent, however appears according to a multiply cited statement in a no longer accessible IBM white paper as follows:Intelligent agents are software...

 as possessing functional consciousness
Consciousness
Consciousness is a term that refers to the relationship between the mind and the world with which it interacts. It has been defined as: subjectivity, awareness, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind...

 when it is capable of several of the functions of consciousness as identified by Bernard Baars
Bernard Baars
Bernard J. Baars is a former Senior Fellow in Theoretical Neurobiology at The Neurosciences Institute in La Jolla, CA., and is currently an Affiliated Fellow there. He is best known as the originator of the global workspace theory, a theory of human cognitive architecture and consciousness...

' Global Workspace Theory
Global Workspace Theory
Global Workspace Theory is a simple Cognitive architecture that has been developed to account qualitatively for a large set of matched pairs of conscious and unconscious processes. It was proposed by Bernard Baars...

 . His brain child IDA (Intelligent Distribution Agent) is a software implementation of GWT, which makes it functionally conscious by definition. IDA's task is to negotiate new assignments for sailors in the US Navy after they end a tour of duty, by matching each individual's skills and preferences with the Navy's needs. IDA interacts with Navy databases and communicates with the sailors via natural language e-mail dialog while obeying a large set of Navy policies. The IDA computational model was developed during 1996–2001 at Stan Franklin's "Conscious" Software Research Group at the University of Memphis
University of Memphis
The University of Memphis is an American public research university located in the Normal Station neighborhood of Memphis, Tennessee and is the flagship public research university of the Tennessee Board of Regents system....

. It "consists of approximately a quarter-million lines of Java
Java (programming language)
Java is a programming language originally developed by James Gosling at Sun Microsystems and released in 1995 as a core component of Sun Microsystems' Java platform. The language derives much of its syntax from C and C++ but has a simpler object model and fewer low-level facilities...

 code, and almost completely consumes the resources of a 2001 high-end workstation." It relies heavily on codelets, which are "special purpose, relatively independent, mini-agent[s] typically implemented as a small piece of code running as a separate thread." In IDA's top-down architecture, high-level cognitive functions are explicitly modeled (see and for details). While IDA is functionally conscious by definition, Franklin does "not attribute phenomenal consciousness
Consciousness
Consciousness is a term that refers to the relationship between the mind and the world with which it interacts. It has been defined as: subjectivity, awareness, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind...

 to his own 'conscious' software agent, IDA, in spite of her many human-like behaviours. This in spite of watching several US Navy detailers repeatedly nodding their heads saying 'Yes, that's how I do it' while watching IDA's internal and external actions as she performs her task."

Ron Sun's cognitive architecture CLARION


CLARION
CLARION (cognitive architecture)
Connectionist Learning with Adaptive Rule Induction ON-line is a cognitive architecture that incorporates the distinction between implicit and explicit processes and focuses on capturing the interaction between these two types of processes. By focusing on this distinction, CLARION has been used to...

 posits a two-level representation that explains the distinction between conscious and unconscious mental processes.

CLARION
CLARION (cognitive architecture)
Connectionist Learning with Adaptive Rule Induction ON-line is a cognitive architecture that incorporates the distinction between implicit and explicit processes and focuses on capturing the interaction between these two types of processes. By focusing on this distinction, CLARION has been used to...

 has been successful in accounting for a variety of psychological data. A number of well-known skill learning tasks have been simulated using CLARION that span the spectrum ranging from simple reactive skills to complex cognitive skills. The tasks include serial reaction time (SRT) tasks, artificial grammar learning (AGL) tasks, process control (PC) tasks, the categorical inference (CI) task, the alphabetical arithmetic (AA) task, and the Tower of Hanoi (TOH) task . Among them, SRT, AGL, and PC are typical implicit learning tasks, very much relevant to the issue of consciousness as they operationalized the notion of consciousness in the context of psychological experiments.

The simulations using CLARION provide detailed, process-based interpretations of experimental data related to consciousness, in the context of a broadly scoped cognitive architecture and a unified theory of cognition. Such interpretations are important for a precise, process-based understanding of consciousness and other aspects of cognition, leading up to better appreciations of the role of consciousness in human cognition . CLARION also makes quantitative and qualitative predictions regarding cognition in the areas of memory, learning, motivation, meta-cognition, and so on. These predictions either have been experimentally tested already or are in the process of being tested.

Ben Goertzel's OpenCog


Ben Goertzel
Ben Goertzel
Ben Goertzel , is an American author and researcher in the field of artificial intelligence. He currently leads Novamente LLC, a privately held software company that attempts to develop a form of strong AI, which he calls "Artificial General Intelligence"...

 is pursuing an embodied AGI through the open-source OpenCog
OpenCog
OpenCog is a project that aims to build an open source artificial general intelligence framework. OpenCog Prime is a specific set of interacting components designed to give rise to human-equivalent artificial general intelligence...

 project. Current code includes embodied virtual pets capable of learning simple English-language commands, as well as integration with real-world robotics, being done at the robotics lab of Hugo de Garis
Hugo de Garis
Hugo de Garis is a researcher in the sub-field of artificial intelligence known as evolvable hardware. He became known in the 1990s for his research on the use of genetic algorithms to evolve neural networks using three dimensional cellular automata inside field programmable gate arrays...

 at Xiamen University
Xiamen University
Xiamen University , colloquially known as Xia Da , located in Xiamen, Fujian province, is the first university in China founded by overseas Chinese. Before 1949, it was originally known as the University of Amoy. The school motto is "Pursue Excellence, Strive for Perfection "...

.

Haikonen's cognitive architecture


Pentti considers classical rule-based computing inadequate for achieving AC: "the brain is definitely not a computer. Thinking is not an execution of programmed strings of commands. The brain is not a numerical calculator either. We do not think by numbers." Rather than trying to achieve mind
Mind
The concept of mind is understood in many different ways by many different traditions, ranging from panpsychism and animism to traditional and organized religious views, as well as secular and materialist philosophies. Most agree that minds are constituted by conscious experience and intelligent...

 and consciousness
Consciousness
Consciousness is a term that refers to the relationship between the mind and the world with which it interacts. It has been defined as: subjectivity, awareness, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind...

 by identifying and implementing their underlying computational rules, Haikonen proposes "a special cognitive architecture
Cognitive architecture
A cognitive architecture is a blueprint for intelligent agents. It proposes computational processes that act like certain cognitive systems, most often, like a person, or acts intelligent under some definition. Cognitive architectures form a subset of general agent architectures...

 to reproduce the processes of perception
Perception
Perception is the process of attaining awareness or understanding of the environment by organizing and interpreting sensory information. All perception involves signals in the nervous system, which in turn result from physical stimulation of the sense organs...

, inner imagery, inner speech, pain
Pain
Pain is an unpleasant sensation often caused by intense or damaging stimuli such as stubbing a toe, burning a finger, putting iodine on a cut, and bumping the "funny bone."...

, pleasure
Pleasure
Pleasure describes the broad class of mental states that humans and other animals experience as positive, enjoyable, or worth seeking. It includes more specific mental states such as happiness, entertainment, enjoyment, ecstasy, and euphoria...

, emotions and the cognitive functions behind these. This bottom-up architecture would produce higher-level functions by the power of the elementary processing units, the artificial neuron
Artificial neuron
An artificial neuron is a mathematical function conceived as a crude model, or abstraction of biological neurons. Artificial neurons are the constitutive units in an artificial neural network...

s, without algorithms or programs
Computer program
A computer program is a sequence of instructions written to perform a specified task with a computer. A computer requires programs to function, typically executing the program's instructions in a central processor. The program has an executable form that the computer can use directly to execute...

". Haikonen believes that, when implemented with sufficient complexity, this architecture will develop consciousness, which he considers to be "a style and way of operation, characterized by distributed signal representation, perception process, cross-modality reporting and availability for retrospection." Haikonen is not alone in this process view of consciousness, or the view that AC will spontaneously emerge in autonomous agent
Autonomous agent
An autonomous agent is an intelligent agent operating on an owner's behalf but without any interference of that ownership entity. An intelligent agent, however appears according to a multiply cited statement in a no longer accessible IBM white paper as follows:Intelligent agents are software...

s that have a suitable neuro-inspired architecture of complexity; these are shared by many, e.g. and . A low-complexity implementation of the architecture proposed by was reportedly not capable of AC, but did exhibit emotions as expected. See for a comprehensive introduction to Haikonen's cognitive architecture.

Takeno's self-awareness research


Self-awareness in robots is being investigated by Junichi Takeno http://robonable.typepad.jp/robot/2_/index.html at Meiji University
Meiji University
is a private university in Tokyo and Kawasaki, founded in 1881 by three lawyers of the Meiji era, Kishimoto Tatsuo, Miyagi Kōzō, and Yashiro Misao. It is one of the largest and most prestigious Japanese universities in Tokyo, Japan....

 in Japan. Takeno is asserting that he has developed a robot capable of discriminating between a self-image in a mirror and any other having an identical image to it http://www.rs.cs.meiji.ac.jp/Takeno_Archive.htmlhttp://www.mimed.mw.tum.de/06-12-18_MIMED_LUETH-002918.PDF, and this claim has already been reviewed . Takeno asserts that he first contrived the computational module called a MoNAD, which has a self-aware function, and he then constructed the artificial consciousness system by formulating the relationships between emotions, feelings and reason by connecting the modules in a hierarchy (Igarashi, Takeno 2007). Takeno completed a mirror image cognition experiment using a robot equipped with the MoNAD system. Takeno proposed the Self-Body Theory stating that "humans feel that their own mirror image is closer to themselves than an actual part of themselves." The most important point in developing artificial consciousness or clarifying human consciousness is the development of a function of self awareness, and he claims that he has demonstrated physical and mathematical evidence for this in his thesis (Takeno 2008 http://www.s2is.org/Issues/v1/n4/papers/paper4.pdf). He also demonstrated that robots can study episodes in memory where the emotions were stimulated and use this experience to take predictive actions to prevent the recurrence of unpleasant emotions (Torigoe, Takeno 2009).

Aleksander's impossible mind


Igor Aleksander
Igor Aleksander
Igor Aleksander FREng is an emeritus professor of Neural Systems Engineering in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Imperial College London...

, emeritus professor of Neural Systems Engineering at Imperial College, has extensively researched artificial neural network
Artificial neural network
An artificial neural network , usually called neural network , is a mathematical model or computational model that is inspired by the structure and/or functional aspects of biological neural networks. A neural network consists of an interconnected group of artificial neurons, and it processes...

s and claims in his book Impossible Minds: My neurons, My Consciousness that the principles for creating a conscious machine already exist but that it would take forty years to train such a machine to understand language
Language
Language may refer either to the specifically human capacity for acquiring and using complex systems of communication, or to a specific instance of such a system of complex communication...

. Whether this is true remains to be demonstrated and the basic principle stated in Impossible minds: that the brain is a neural state machine
Finite state machine
A finite-state machine or finite-state automaton , or simply a state machine, is a mathematical model used to design computer programs and digital logic circuits. It is conceived as an abstract machine that can be in one of a finite number of states...

 is open to doubt.

Testing for artificial consciousness


The most well-known method for testing machine intelligence is the Turing test
Turing test
The Turing test is a test of a machine's ability to exhibit intelligent behaviour. In Turing's original illustrative example, a human judge engages in a natural language conversation with a human and a machine designed to generate performance indistinguishable from that of a human being. All...

 and it may be seen as an indirect test for consciousness. Another test, inspired by features of biological systems, is ConsScale, and it has been proposed as a means to measure and characterize the cognitive development of artificial creatures.

Yet there is a very serious objection to the plausibility of a test for consciousness. Tests, as such, are third-person procedures in which data is accessible to independent inquirers. However, qualia, or phenomenological consciousness, is an inherently first-person phenomenon. Accordingly, although various systems may display various signs of behavior correlated with functional consciousness, there is no conceivable way in which third-person procedures can have access to first-person phenomenological features. Ultimately, then, a test of strong versions of AC may be impossible.

Artificial consciousness in literature and movies


  • Vanamonde in Arthur C. Clarke
    Arthur C. Clarke
    Sir Arthur Charles Clarke, CBE, FRAS was a British science fiction author, inventor, and futurist, famous for his short stories and novels, among them 2001: A Space Odyssey, and as a host and commentator in the British television series Mysterious World. For many years, Robert A. Heinlein,...

    's The City and the Stars
    The City and the Stars
    The City and the Stars is a science fiction novel by Arthur C. Clarke. It is a complete rewrite of his earlier novella, Against the Fall of Night.-Overview:...

    —an artificial being that was immensely powerful but entirely child-like.
  • The Ship (the result of a large-scale AC experiment) in Frank Herbert
    Frank Herbert
    Franklin Patrick Herbert, Jr. was a critically acclaimed and commercially successful American science fiction author. Although a short story author, he is best known for his novels, most notably Dune and its five sequels...

    's Destination: Void
    Destination: Void
    Destination: Void is the first science fiction novel set in the Destination: Void universe by the American author Frank Herbert. A revised edition, edited and updated by the author, was released in 1978...

    and sequels, despite past edicts warning against "Making a Machine in the Image of a Man's Mind."
  • Jane
    Jane (Ender's Game)
    Jane is a fictional character in Orson Scott Card's Ender series. She is an artificial sentience thought to exist within the ansible network by which spaceships and planets communicate instantly across galactic distances. She has appeared in the novels Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, and Children...

     in Orson Scott Card
    Orson Scott Card
    Orson Scott Card is an American author, critic, public speaker, essayist, columnist, and political activist. He writes in several genres, but is primarily known for his science fiction. His novel Ender's Game and its sequel Speaker for the Dead both won Hugo and Nebula Awards, making Card the...

    's Speaker for the Dead
    Speaker for the Dead
    Speaker for the Dead is a science fiction novel by Orson Scott Card and an indirect sequel to the novel Ender's Game. This book takes place around the year 5270, some 3,000 years after the events in Ender's Game...

    , Xenocide
    Xenocide
    Xenocide is the third novel in the Ender's Game series of books by Orson Scott Card. It was nominated for both the Hugo and Locus Awards for Best Novel in 1992...

    , Children of the Mind
    Children of the Mind
    Children of the Mind is the fourth book of Orson Scott Card's popular Ender's Game series of science fiction novels that focus on the character Ender Wiggin...

    , and Investment Counselor
    Investment Counselor (short story)
    "Investment Counselor" is a story by Orson Scott Card set in his Ender's Game universe. It tells the story of how Ender Wiggin first met the artificial intelligence Jane and became a speaker for the dead...

  • HAL 9000
    HAL 9000
    HAL 9000 is the antagonist in Arthur C. Clarke's science fiction Space Odyssey saga. HAL is an artificial intelligence that interacts with the astronaut crew of the Discovery One spacecraft, usually represented as a red television-camera eye found throughout the ship...

     in 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • Robots in Isaac Asimov
    Isaac Asimov
    Isaac Asimov was an American author and professor of biochemistry at Boston University, best known for his works of science fiction and for his popular science books. Asimov was one of the most prolific writers of all time, having written or edited more than 500 books and an estimated 90,000...

    's Robot Series
    Isaac Asimov's Robot Series
    Isaac Asimov's Robot Series is a series of short stories and novels by Isaac Asimov featuring positronic robots.- Short stories :Most of Asimov's robot short stories are set in the first age of positronic robotics and space exploration...

  • The Minds
    Mind (The Culture)
    In Iain M. Banks' Culture novels most larger starships, some inhabited planets and all orbitals have their own Minds: sentient, hyperintelligent machines originally built by biological species which have evolved, redesigned themselves, and become many times more intelligent than their original...

     in Iain M. Banks' Culture
    The Culture
    The Culture is a fictional interstellar anarchist, socialist, and utopian society created by the Scottish writer Iain M. Banks which features in a number of science fiction novels and works of short fiction by him, collectively called the Culture series....

     novels.

See also

  • Artificial Intelligence
    Artificial intelligence
    Artificial intelligence is the intelligence of machines and the branch of computer science that aims to create it. AI textbooks define the field as "the study and design of intelligent agents" where an intelligent agent is a system that perceives its environment and takes actions that maximize its...

  • Brain-computer interface
    Brain-computer interface
    A brain–computer interface , sometimes called a direct neural interface or a brain–machine interface , is a direct communication pathway between the brain and an external device...

  • Greedy reductionism
    Greedy reductionism
    Greedy reductionism is a term coined by Daniel Dennett, in his 1995 book Darwin's Dangerous Idea, to refer to a kind of erroneous reductionism...

  • Homunculus fallacy
  • Identity of indiscernibles
    Identity of indiscernibles
    The identity of indiscernibles is an ontological principle which states that two or more objects or entities are identical if they have all their properties in common. That is, entities x and y are identical if any predicate possessed by x is also possessed by y and vice versa...

  • Jabberwacky
    Jabberwacky
    Jabberwacky is a chatterbot created by British programmer Rollo Carpenter. Its stated aim is to "simulate natural human chat in an interesting, entertaining and humorous manner"...

  • Kismet (robot)
    Kismet (robot)
    Kismet is a robot made in the late 1990s at Massachusetts Institute of Technology by Dr. Cynthia Breazeal. The robot's auditory, visual and expressive systems were intended to allow it to participate in human social interaction and to demonstrate simulated human emotion and appearance...

  • Morgan's Canon
    Morgan's Canon
    Coined by 19th-century British psychologist C. Lloyd Morgan, Morgan's Canon remains a fundamental precept of comparative psychology...

  • Philosophy of mind
    Philosophy of mind
    Philosophy of mind is a branch of philosophy that studies the nature of the mind, mental events, mental functions, mental properties, consciousness and their relationship to the physical body, particularly the brain. The mind-body problem, i.e...

  • Psi-Theory
    Psi-Theory
    Psi-Theory, developed by Dietrich Dörner, is about human action regulation, intention and behaviour. The theory describes a comprehensive model of the human brain, its cognitive processes, emotion and motivation. It is about the informational structure of an intelligent, motivated, emotional agent ...

  • Simulated reality
    Simulated reality
    Simulated reality is the proposition that reality could be simulated—perhaps by computer simulation—to a degree indistinguishable from "true" reality. It could contain conscious minds which may or may not be fully aware that they are living inside a simulation....

  • Strong AI
    Strong AI
    Strong AI is artificial intelligence that matches or exceeds human intelligence — the intelligence of a machine that can successfully perform any intellectual task that a human being can. It is a primary goal of artificial intelligence research and an important topic for science fiction writers and...

  • William Grey Walter
    William Grey Walter
    W. Grey Walter was a neurophysiologist and robotician.-Overview:Walter was born in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1910. His ancestry was German/British on his father's side, and American/British on his mother's side. He was brought to England in 1915, and educated at Westminster School and afterwards...

  • Alan Rosen
    Alan Rosen
    Alan Rosen is a robotic neurobiologist, machine consciousness designer, space systems engineer-scientist, and nuclear physicist, known for his design and development of robotic machines that exhibit characteristics of human intelligence, consciousness, and emotions.- Youth :Alan Rosen was born in...


Further reading

  • Haikonen, Pentti (2004), Conscious Machines and Machine Emotions, presented at Workshop on Models for Machine Consciousness, Antwerp, BE, June 2004.
  • Baars, Bernard J and Stan Franklin. 2003. How conscious experience and working memory interact. Trends in Cognitive Science 7: 166–172.
  • Franklin, S, B J Baars, U Ramamurthy, and Matthew Ventura. 2005. The role of consciousness in memory. Brains, Minds and Media 1: 1–38, pdf.
  • Casti, John L. "The Cambridge Quintet: A Work of Scientific Speculation", Perseus Books Group , 1998
  • McCarthy, John (1971–1987), Generality in Artificial Intelligence http://www-formal.stanford.edu/jmc/generality/generality.html. Stanford University, 1971-1987.
  • Pharoah M.C. (online). Looking to systems theory for a reductive explanation of phenomenal experience and evolutionary foundations for higher order thought Retrieved Dec. 13, 2007.
  • Suzuki T., Inaba K., Takeno, Junichi (2005), Conscious Robot That Distinguishes Between Self and Others and Implements Imitation Behavior, ( Best Paper of IEA/AIE2005), Innovations in Applied Artificial Intelligence, 18th International Conference on Industrial and Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems, pp. 101–110, IEA/AIE 2005, Bari, Italy, June 22–24, 2005.
  • Takeno, Junichi (2006), The Self-Aware Robot -A Response to Reactions to Discovery News- http://www.d6.dion.ne.jp/~takenof/SAR-LAL-Takeno.pdf, HRI Press, August 2006.
  • Sternberg, Eliezer J. (2007) Are You a Machine? Tha Brain the Mind and What it Means to be Human. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books.
  • Wikibook on consciousness
  • Site of Steven Ericsson-Zenith's Explaining Experience in Nature information site.
  • Zagal, J.C., Lipson, H. (2009) "Self-Reflection in Evolutionary Robotics" http://ccsl.mae.cornell.edu/sites/default/files/GECCO09_Zagal.pdf, Proceedings of the Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference, pp 2179–2188, GECCO 2009.

External links


Open Source Software Projects