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From cybernetics to brain theory, and more: A memoir

My chum, Péter Érdi, editor of Cognitive Systems Research, has alerted me to the open access memoir (63 pages) by neuroscience grandee Michael Arbib. Giving me the opportunity to talk to these visitors was one of the ways in which McCulloch contributed more to my graduate education than any other professor at MIT. When I thanked him, he…

Norbert Wiener

Born on this day. Here’s an assessment of Wiener’s legacy from a few years back. Having read most of the notable work on “epistemic ignorance” (yes, there really is a specialized small literature) there is one prize that still alludes me and that is Wiener’s “The Theory of Ignorance” (1906), a philosophical demonstration of the…

Complexity Explained

With my good chum Péter Érdi at The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers mega shindig. Check out Peter’s excellent book (the title is as bold as Dennett’s Consciousness Explained) and now that Peter is head honcho for Cognitive Systems Research consider submitting something to them — it’s a very ecumenical journal with a nice balance between the philosophical and…

Hayek: Cognitive Scientist Avant La Lettre

From Advances in Austrian Economics PROLOGUE It is probably no more justified to claim that thinking man has created his culture than that culture created his reason (Hayek, 1952/1979, p. 155). For Hayek, intelligence is manifest through a reciprocal coalition with the artifactual (social and physical), a causal integration that can take ontogenetic, phylogenetic, individual,…