AAAI Publications, 2011 AAAI Fall Symposium Series

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In Defense of the Neo-Piagetian Approach to Modeling and Engineering Human-Level Cognitive Systems
John Licato, Selmer Bringsjord

Last modified: 2011-11-03


Presumably any human-level cognitive system (HLCS) must have the capacity to: maintain and learn new concepts; believe propositions about its environment that are constructed from these concepts, and from what it perceives; reason over the propositions it believes, in order to among other things manipulate its environment and justify its significant decisions; and learn new concepts. Given this list of desiderata, it’s hard to see how any intelligent attempt to build or simulate a HLCS can avoid falling under a neo-Piagetian approach to engineering HLCSs. Unfortunately, such engineering has been discursively declared by Jerry Fodor to be flat-out impossible. After setting out Fodor’s challenges, we refute them and, inspired by those refutations, sketch our solutions on behalf of those wanting to computationally model and construct HLCSs, under neo-Piagetian assumptions.


Artificial Intelligence, Human-Level Intelligence, Cognitive Systems, Neo-Piagetianism, Piagetianism, Fodor's Paradox, Compositionality, Systematicity, Productivity, Bootstrapping, Concept Acquisition

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