Essay Example. Functionalism and AI

Published: 2023-08-06
Essay Example. Functionalism and AI
Essay type:  Definition essays
Categories:  Information technologies Intelligence Artificial intelligence
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1851 words
16 min read

Functionalism is the doctrine that explains that what makes a mental state of any type out of something does not entirely depend on the internal constitution it possesses but rather on its way of functioning and its role in any system that is a part of (Mandik, 2013). Multiple realizability is the thesis that a single mental event, state, or property can be realized using various physical kinds. The mental and physical types are correlated not in a one-one manner but in a one-many way. Multiple realizability defends several versions of functionalism, mainly machine state or artificial intelligence functionalism. The multiple realizability argument has been used to support functionalism multiple times with one version of the argument using thought experiments that are designed in a way that shows how minds are supposed to be composed of different material types. There is a unique element that is extremely stunning and incredible in the idea behind artificial intelligence and functionalism in the philosophy of mind. Alan Turing, while using the Turing Test, argues that computers can think because they have linguistic abilities. John Searle argued against Turing's idea of computers and their functionalism, making him refute Turing by showing that there are not syntactical processes that matter; instead, there is more to having a mind, thoughts, a mental state, and consciousness which computers lack (Mandik, 2013).

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Functionalism and Multiple Realizability

Multiple realizability creates a need to correctly characterize the realization of relations that remain contentious matters in the analysis of functionalism. The thesis on the mental state given this state of mind offers a psychological kind that can stand in the relationship using various physical kinds (Mandik, 2013). Illustration of multiple realizability distinguishes two major types of relations, mainly the over physical structures and in a token system that takes place over time.

The negative part that functionalism has is its concerns over what mental states do not entail. The multiple realizability thesis is a negative part is a functionalism, and it contrasts the identity theory of mind-brain (Mandik, 2013). Two major ideas that many functionalists appeal to in the development of their positions are kind functional ideas and those of multiple realizations. Functionalism and multiple realizability work together as long as they are able to achieve the defining functions.

Contemporary enthusiasm for functionalism emerges from enthusiasm on various analogies that are drawn from computers and minds. Computers are multiple realizable and functional kinds as they can read and write symbols in governed ways with all types of materials being deployed to ensure that they construct computers (Mandik, 2013). The analogy that exists between computers and minds is that they allow us to have excellent thinking of the relationship of the brain and mind in the brain as well as computers.

Computers have abstract symbols, but there is much more than a string of such symbols compared to the syntax and semantics that the mind possesses. Personally, Artificial Intelligence is not possible because computers lack in realizability due to a lack of a mind, consciousness, and a mental state (Mandik, 2013). A human being's internal mental state has content, and they generally possess intentionality making them far superior to computers or will ever be.

Artificial Psychology and Functionalism

There is something extremely stunning and incredible in artificial intelligence and functionalism in the human mind. AI is a research field with a general aim of researching and investigating the concept of whether it is logical and technical in the possibility of building machines or program computers (Mandik, 2013). They can achieve a diverse flow of various cognitive activities that involve inductive and deductive reasoning, planning, desiring, and believing just like human beings are capable of doing.

The Turing test developed a functionalist theory of mind that updated identity theory and behaviorism. Functionalism, in this context, achieves two main things. First, it demonstrates a fact of how mental states must have functional-causal roles to achieve inner states as opposed to the behaviorist framework (Mandik, 2013). Secondly, it unfolds a wide liberal perspective as opposed to the chauvinistic attitudes that majors on the mind-brain identity theory.

Any system can pass the Turing Test and become qualified as an intelligent being. The test has brought about a radical change to how we describe intelligence and mentality in a way that offers new conceptual repertoires in comprehending mind metaphysics and the framework that is backed up by large optimism (Mandik, 2013). Turing in the Turing Test argues that machines can think, and the question as to whether machines are capable of thinking is meaningless in such a way that no discussion is required to argue about such a concept.

However, the argument will show that Turing is not completely correct in his concept, even though machines controlled by digital computers are, for sure, doing well in certain technological aspects. The Imitation Game is a reason to believe that Turing is wrong because it creates a question that requires precise discussions (Mandik, 2013). Turing himself contradicts himself by explaining that it was not going to be long before digital computers, which could do well in imitating human beings, dominated the world. This argument is a show of tests of behavior in the presence of thought and mind and the intelligence in putative entities.

Consciousness is the role of physical embodiment and emotional states, and it helps in creating awareness of oneself with the notion of emotional states leading to a conclusion consciousness is unique to human beings, and it is related to biological concepts (Mandik, 2013). Different methods have been created to measure human consciousness, which makes it a fallacy to claim that human beings are not conscious, just like machines. The Truman test also argues that equal to the human body and mind; a computer has a physical representation of itself and the surrounding around it.

John Searle is right in his criticism of Artificial Intelligence as he argues that no evidence has been provided to prove that a machine can duplicate human thinking. This claim is right for the following reasons; rather than guiding computers in the process of learning, it is offered the ability to interact with the environment and be able to learn from the given interactions (Mandik, 2013). Artificial intelligence must have consciousness due to its inability to emulate human intelligence.

Turing proposed that computers can possess artificial intelligence if it can copy human beings' responses under certain circumstances. The Turing test has three main terminals, each of which is physically divided from the other two terminals (Mandik, 2013). One of the human functions acts as a questionnaire while the second one and the computer are respondents. The questioner interrogates the respondent, and then the questioner is inquired to choose which of the respondent a human is and which of them is a computer.

John Searle argues against The Turing Test due to its limitations and the criticism it has received over the years. The nature of the questioning is partial so that the computer can exhibit intelligence that is similar to that possessed by human beings (Mandik, 2013). Searle has made his Chinese Room Argument an excellent way to discuss that syntax does not originate from semantics, and the brains cause minds. John Searle's argument is an excellent way to refute Turing Test validity and his position in the way he criticizes the Artificial Intelligence community (Mandik, 2013). Searle's debate plays a major role in bringing out the issues that are involved in the definition of intelligence as it becomes clearer over time.

Turing proposed a definition of intelligence in such a way that it is equally applicable to both humans and machines. In its originality, the test works towards replacing machines, which, according to Turing, is capable of thought (Mandik, 2013). Turing argued that if the results of the game are not affected by the presence of a machine, then it is capable of thought with written interactions being the major platform.

However, a machine is not capable of thought because human-made and has no conscience. Machines, especially Artificial Intelligence, cannot contain a conscience and think as people do (Mandik, 2013). They perform better than people do, and when they are placed in the same room with people do perform the same task, they do it better and faster than people. However, under the control of a computer, there are times which computers may face power failures and inadequate feeding of data leading to poor data analysis due to a lack of thought and conscience.

Turing argues that intelligence can be captured using formal systems as long as one has a will to agree that the nature of intelligence exists essentially in acceptance of the systems. Turing's work is informal as he alleged it was obvious that his description of intelligence was accurate, and there was no purpose to get formal (Mandik, 2013). Conversely, I argue that although Turing's explanation is obvious, it is probable that there exist adequately defined objections to it.

Searle opposes Turing's argument in a way that confuses readers, and I find it effective to propose a problem that is similar to what Searle and Turing consider but is less emotional (Mandik, 2013). The problem presented is in the definition of gender, which applies to machines and humans equally as it is easily noticeable that there is no satisfactory definition of gender, which makes Searle's argument against Turing as a valid way of defining intelligence.

Turing believes that different approaches should be used, such as the specification of tests that involve physical appearance, which works for human beings (Mandik, 2013). The second approach is the definition of gender in terms of gestures and mannerisms. Gender is defined in terms of observed behavior and the potential behavior that may be realized.

To describe and support Searle's argument and point of view, the introduction of intentionality, a consciousness characteristic where such consciousness is directed towards something or awareness of someone's actions will be necessary. According to Searle, intentionality is the property of mind by which it is easily able to represent other things (Mandik, 2013). The representation in this perspective is the mental state through which propositional contents are easily achieved and help to acquire satisfaction. Searle's argument is agreeable because intentionality helps to distinguish thought that human beings possess from the mechanical action of Artificial Intelligence.

The argument that Searle presents characterizes intentionality in properties. The Chinese Room argument strongly argues against strong AI and the argument that programmed computers actually can think (Mandik, 2013). The argument is a

representation of the fact that it is hard for an individual that understands only English to sit in a room and respond to questions in the Chinese language. The Turing test does not test for thought or comprehension in any real manner making it an inadequate and invalid test.

Artificial Intelligence is a simulation of reality; rather, it is a response to the real contingencies. The argument that Searle tries to drive home with this concept is that as other biological activities, thought depends on the most on where it originates from, which makes the thought of simulation (Mandik, 2013).

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