On Mechanisation of Thought Processes

Jon Doyle

This talk describes how traditional mechanical concepts of force, inertia, and work provide a new language for analyzing thinking and for characterizing realistic notions of rationality. I first sketch a natural extension of the axioms of modern rational mechanics to discrete and hybrid mechanical systems in which some kinds of minds exhibit actual, non-metaphorical mental forces and mental inertia. I then illustrate the ideas by identifying forces and masses entering into a simple kind of reasoning agent, and by sketching how mechanical work in such systems provides a measure of mental effort.

Subjects: 9. Foundational Issues

Submitted: Mar 3, 2006

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