Claim-Making In Artificial Intelligence Research

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Miller, B. Diane. "Claim-Making In Artificial Intelligence Research." SFRA Review #208, Nov./Dec/ 1993: 35-44.

Brief discussion for lay readers of the conflict in AI research between the "neuroscience (brain simulation) based paradigm" and the model "grounded in language as a symbolic representation of the world" (37). Asks why, between the late 1940s and 1970 and beyond "did one paradigm . . . triumph over the other? How did the symbolic system paradigm" until fairly recently "gain control of the research funds while the brain modeling paradigm took a back seat?" (39). Follows Thomas S. Kuhn's analysis (in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions [1970]) to conclude that there was a sort of paradigm prejudice (our term) at work: what one of BDM's sources describes as a "quasi-religious philosophical prejudice against holism" (qtd on 40). Ends by suggesting following Ludwig Wittgenstein in recanting an atomistic approach to mind: if ". . . human thought is a much more holistic process than either neural nets or symbol systems; then the future paradigm of AI research will be a combination of both paradigms rather than one paradigm replacing the other as Thomas Kuhn's work would indicate" (41).

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