CvC - Throughout the years, the study of Artificial...

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Throughout the years, the study of Artificial Intelligence has expanded significantly. Recent years have seen the development of robots that, at first glance, seem to comprehend stimuli rather than just react to it. Now, research scientists and engineers are forging ahead, hoping to develop AI that truly thinks and is conscious of its surroundings. Yet, even with the increasing technology of the new century, many of these groups have found that they are stuck at a dead end. The problem for these scientists is not the lack of technological resources but a lack of understanding of what consciousness really is and how it comes to be. This lack of understanding stems partly from the ignorance of the functional processes of the brain. Out of this realization comes the struggle to understand exactly how the human brain works. There are two major camps for this issue: classical computationalist and connectionist. Within this debate lies the question of whether connectionism is really an authentic alternative to classicism or rather just a lower level explanation in support of the theories of the classicist. As will be explained later in this essay, though the correct description of the functional process of the human brain may not be concluded as of yet, it can be determined that connectionism allows for a legitimate substitute for the classical computationalist view. Over the past few decades, research scientists and engineers in the field of Artificial Intelligence have divided into two distinct groups. One group has remained loyal to the classic theory that intelligent behavior can only be explained in terms of algorithmic processes of the computation of symbols conforming to the rules of syntax. This group is popularly known as classical computationalists, or, more simply put, classicists. On the other side of the argument is the group which has broken away from the classical theory of intelligent behavior. This group is widely known as
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This essay was uploaded on 04/16/2008 for the course IHSS IHSS 1051 taught by Professor Vanorman during the Spring '08 term at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

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CvC - Throughout the years, the study of Artificial...

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