In this course wewill consider questions such as "Can computers think?", "Can the Turing test determine whether computers can think?", "Can physical symbol systems think?", "Can Chinese rooms think?", "Can connectionist networks think?", "Can computers think in images?", "Do computers have to be conscious to think?", "Are thinking computers mathematically possible?". The course starts with two introductory sessions, after which the students present papers on topics pertaining to the topics listed above. The students are required to participate actively during the course, not only by preparing a stimulating presentation, but also by providing references to websites and literature, advance reading in order to be able to participate in the discussion afterwards. There are two presentations each meeting, both of around 25 minutes with an ensuing discussion of 20 minutes. At the beginning of the course students can sign up for the topic they would like to present a paper on. This course is very much a joint effort of students and teaching staff.
There will be an entrance test at a very early stage in the course. For those students who hold a bachelor's degree in AI or have taken courses in philosophy of cognitive science or in philosophy of computer science, this test will prove to be easy. All other students are advised to do both of the following: 1) study Copeland's book before the start of the course, and 2) get in touch with the contact person for this course at an early stage.
This course is for Students History and Philosophy of Science, RMA Philosophy. Students of other MA-programmes, please contact the Course Coordinator.