Philosophy Lexicon of Arguments

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Chinese Room: thought experiment by J.R. Searle - in a locked room sits a man who does not understand Chinese and translates notes that are slipped through under the door into Chinese with the help of a book with instructions. The discussion is about whether one can describe the system as a whole as an understanding system.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

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Books on Amazon:
David Chalmers

I 323
Chinese Room/Searle/Chalmers: Searle's argument is directed against the possibility of understanding or intentionality.
ChalmersVsSearle: we separate intentionality and understanding from the possibility of having conscious experiences. We split Searle's argument into two parts:
(1) No program achieves consciousness.
(2) No program achieves intentionality (understanding).
Searle believes that (1) implies (2), others doubt that.
Strong artificial intelligence: if (1) is true, the strong Artificial Intelligence thesis fails, but if (1) can be refuted, even Searle would accept that the Chinese Room argument failed. The connection of consciousness and understanding can be set aside, it is not a decisive argument against artificial intelligence.
FodorVsChinese Room: (Fodor 1980): Fordor considers the connection to the environment of the system.
ReyVsChinese Room: (Rey 1986) dito.
BodenVsChinese Room: (Boden 1988) Boden shows functional or procedural approaches of intentionality.
ThagardVsChinese Room: (Thagard 1986) dito.
Chalmers: it is about intentionality (understanding) and does not refute the possibility of consciousness (conscious experiences).
Chinese Room/Chalmers: the argument states that a program is not sufficient, e.g. for the experience of a red object when implemented in a black and white environment. Then consciousness needs more than one relevant program.
Strong Artificial IntelligenceVsChinese Room/Strong Artificial IntelligenceVsSearle: it is the whole system to which you have to attribute consciousness, not the individual elements.
SearleVsVs: that is implausible. Chalmers: in fact, it is implausible, if the inhabitant of the room should have no consciousness, but the inhabitant together with the paper.
I 324
Disappearing Qualia: the argument can also be applied to the Chinese Room (... + ...)
I 325
Dancing Qualia: dito (... + ...)
Conclusion/Chalmers: a system of demons and paper snippets both of which can reduce the number of demons and snippets, has the same conscious experiences as e.g. to understand Chinese or to see something red.
Chinese Room/Chalmers: 1. As described by Searle, the stack of paper is not a simple stack, but a dynamic system of symbol manipulation.
2. The role of the inhabitant (in our variant: the demon, which can be multiplied) is quite secondary.
When we look at the causal dynamics between the symbols, it is no longer so implausible to ascribe consciousness to the system.
I 326
The inhabitant is only a kind of causal mediator.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.

Cha I
The Conscious Mind Oxford New York 1996

Cha II
D. Chalmers
Constructing the World Oxford 2014

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2018-04-24