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Title:Rethinking machines: artificial intelligence beyond the philosophy of mind
Author(s):Estrada, Daniel
Director of Research:Waskan, Jonathan
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Waskan, Jonathan
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Korman, Daniel Z.; Wagner, Steven J.; Arana, Andrew P.
Department / Program:Philosophy
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):machine participation
philosophy of technology
Alan Turing
artificial intelligence
philosophy of mind
Lady Lovelace
machine autonomy
human computation
network theory
fair play
Abstract:Recent philosophy of mind has increasingly focused on the role of technology in shaping, influencing, and extending our mental faculties. Technology extends the mind in two basic ways: through the creative design of artifacts and the purposive use of instruments. If the meaningful activity of technological artifacts were exhaustively described in these mind-dependent terms, then a philosophy of technology would depend entirely on our theory of mind. In this dissertation, I argue that a mind-dependent approach to technology is mistaken. Instead, some machines are best understood as independent participants in their own right, contributing to and augmenting a variety of social practices as active, though often unrecognized, community members. Beginning with Turing’s call for “fair play for machines”, I trace an argument concerning the social autonomy of nonhuman agents through the artificial intelligence debates of the 20th century. I’ll argue that undue focus on the mind has obscured the force of Turing’s proposal, leaving the debates in an unfortunate stalemate. I will then examine a network theoretic alternative to the study of multi-agent complex systems that can avoid anthropocentric, mind-dependent ways of framing human-machine interactions. I argue that this approach allows for both scientific and philosophical treatment of large and complicated sociotechnical systems, and suggests novel methods for designing, managing, and maintaining such systems. Rethinking machines in mind-independent terms will illuminate the nature, scope, and evolution of our social and technological practices, and will help clarify the relationships between minds, machines, and the environments we share.
Issue Date:2014-09-16
Rights Information:To the extent possible under law, Daniel Estrada has waived all copyright and related or neighboring rights to Rethinking Machines: Artificial Intelligence beyond the Philosophy of Mind.
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-09-16
Date Deposited:2014-08

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