Short works

Books : reviews

Harold J. Morowitz, Jerome L. Singer, eds.
The Mind, The Brain, and Complex Adaptive Systems.
Addison-Wesley. 1995

This is a volume of thoughtful essays by a group of scientific leaders from physics, cognitive psychology, cognitive science, the philosophy of science, artificial intelligence, and brain physiology. It addresses fundamental issues such as, in the words of one of the contributors (Nobel Prize-winner Herbert A. Simon), “How a mind resides in a brain.” The essays are set in the framework of the evolving scientific concept of complex adaptive systems, the basis for which is laid in an impressive essay by another Nobelist, physicist Murray Gell-Mann. The various chapters include studies of the neurobiology of mental representation, the brain architecture that bears on the organization of human memory, a connectionist approach to emotions and neuro-modulation, the possible neurobiological bases of consciousness, the new scientific understanding of human unconscious processes, and even the possibility of formulating a parallel distributed process computer simulation of daydreaming and nightdreaming. Scientists in the fields of brain biology, artificial intelligence, and psychology, as well as educators interested in the links of mind and brain, will find stimulating material for potential research and teaching in each chapter.


Murray Gell-Mann. Complex Adaptive Systems. 1994
CASs perceive and respond to patterns: responding to patterns that are not actually there is "superstition", refusing to recognise patterns that are real is "denial" • Compression of perceived regularities, not just look-up tables • External fitness imposed by humans in the loop, versus internal emergent fitness where it is harder to define what is fit without being circular • Maladaptive: frozen accidents, mismatched timescales, ... • Hierarchies of CASs, higher level CASs composed of coevolving CASs
Jerome L. Singer. Mental Processes and Brain Architecture: Confronting the Complex Adaptive Systems of Human Thought (An Overview). 1995
Herbert A. Simon. Near Decomposability and Complexity: How A Mind Resides in a Brain. 1995
John Henry Holland. Can There Be A Unified Theory of Complex Adaptive Systems?. 1995
Patricia S. Goldman-Rakic. Neurobiology of Mental Representation. 1995
Larry R. Squire, Barbara J. Knowlton. The Organization of Memory. 1995
Patricia Smith Churchland. Can Neurobiology Teach us Anything About Consciousness?. 1995
John F. Kihlstrom. The Rediscovery of the Unconscious. 1995
David E. Rumelhart. Affects and Neuro-Modulation: A Connectionist Approach. 1995
John Antrobus. Thinking Away and Ahead. 1995
Roger C. Schank, John B. Cleave. Natural Learning, Natural Teaching: Changing Human Memory. 1995
Stevan Harnad. Does Mind Piggyback on Robotic and Symbolic Capacity?. 1995
Daniel C. Dennett. Evolution as An Algorithm--The Ultimate Insult?. 1995