COMP 150 ECP - Evolution of Cognitive Processes


What Is Thought? by Eric B. Baum, Bradford/MIT Press, 2004

Table of Contents

(I have added questions that have come up in class.)
  1. Introduction
  2. The Mind Is a Computer Program
  3. The Turing Test, the Chinese Room, and What Computers Can't Do
  4. Occam's Razor and Understanding
  5. Optimization
  6. Remarks on Ocaam's Razor
  7. Reinforcement Learning
  8. Exploiting Structure
  9. Modules and Metaphors
  10. Evolutionary Programming
  11. Intractability
  12. The Evolution of Learning
  13. Language and the Evolution of Thought
  14. The Evolution of Consciousness
  15. What Is Thought?

Main thesis:

Semantics is equivalent to capturing and exploiting the compact structure of the world, and thought is all about semantics.

Links of interest