The Mind at AI: Horseless Carriage to Clock

William C. Hill


Commentators on AI converge on two goals they believe define the field: (1) to better understand the mind by specifying computational models and (2) to construct computer systems that perform actions traditionally regarded as mental. We should recognize that AI has a third, hidden, more basic aim; that the first two goals are special cases of the third; and that the actual technical substance of AI concerns only this more basic aim. This third aim is to establish new computation-based representational media, media in which human intellect can come to express itself with different clarity and force. This article articulates this proposal by showing how the intellectual activity we label AI can be likened in revealing ways to each of five familiar technologies.

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