artificial intelligence
(or AI )
The science of making machines that can do the kinds of thing that humans can do. Topics of research have included speech recognition, visual recognition, and the more familiar problem-solving and game-playing. Modelling a psychological phenomenon on a computer is a way of showing how the phenomenon is possible in a physical world, and is also a way of bringing out the complexities involved in apparently simple tasks. A central concept in much AI research is that of a representation, with programs designed to construct, adapt, and link representations in the production of intelligent responses. This research has been responsible for a considerable retreat from dogmatic behaviourism, in which the idea of mental manipulations was thought to be unscientific, since it is exactly the storage and manipulation of representations of the world that is demanded in the problems AI approaches. Strong AI is the philosophical thesis that appropriately programmed computers have minds in exactly the same sense that we do. Weak AI is the methodological belief that the best way to explore the mind is to proceed as if this were true, without commenting on the legacies of dualism that lead to discomfort with the strong thesis. See also Chinese room, connectionism, frame problem, Turing test.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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