Tuesday, March 22, 2011 - Background Machines a man goes...

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Background: Machines - a man goes to the coke machines, and keeps sticking nickels into the slot until after the third nickel, a coke pops out - if he wants to figure out the inner states of the coke machine, he could open up and look - what if you cannot look inside? - the first thing you know is that nickels are the only input that is relative to the machine - there are only two outputs: nothing (for the first two nickels) or a coke (on the third nickel) - you can then hypothesize as to what the internal states of the machines are: Inputs Initial State Next State Output Nickel 0 5 None 5 10 None 10 0 Coke - this machine table accurately characterizes the three internal states of the machine A: 3 internal states 0, 5, 10 are specified by the machine table A: Take state 10: there is a state x such that... - if in 5 & receive input, then go to x; - if in x & receive input, then to go 0; - if in x & receive input, then output coke; - we name x ’10’ - there is nothing more to being internal state 10 than this - functionalism says : you are what you do - functionalism about the mind is basically the claim that just as a machine table that can define the internal states of the coke machine in terms of inputs, outputs, and internal transitions, so a machine table can define mental states in terms of inputs, outputs and internal transitions - if you want to find out what pain is, you make a machine table with inputs (hitting yourself with a bat) and the output - note: the contrast with behaviorism: behaviorism holes (1) mental states can be defined by inputs and outputs alone, and (2) mind-talk refers to behaviors - functionalism holds (1*) mental states can be defined by inputs, outputs and internal transitions alone and (2*) ...... SEE SLIDES - now you might object that we are way more complicated than coke machines, and thus, no machine table can capture our minds - but notice: coke machines can get pretty fancy (or any machine that is functionally specifiable by machine tables) Coke Machine #2 - What if you have a machine that inputs nickels or dimes?
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Inputs Initial State Next State Output Nickel 0 5 None 5 10 None 10 0 Coke Dime 0 5 None 5 10 Coke 10 0 Coke In the last row, if you want change back, it might output a coke and a nickel...
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