You are psychic...I was going to ask for a bio!....

it is refreshing to find a computer scientist that honestly faces the  
brute biological reality of messy neuro-cells and their cognitive  
faculties and really lets it speak its story ... one more complex than  
mere symbol manipulation ...As an engineer I admit to the same  
experience... except I am going to build the AGI after the fashion of  
the experience thus obtained... dilettantry is not an option!...  
although if you are a multidisciplinary type (as it seems you are necessarily delittantish, for there is no profession  
for it!


Quoting David Nyman <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>:

> Recent dialogues with Russell, plus discovering and finding helpful
> previous joining posts, prompts me to post this for reference
> purposes.
> I was born in 1950 in Glasgow Scotland of Anglo-Scottish parents, and
> come from Hungarian, Middle Eastern, Russian, and Polish ancestry
> insofar as I can trace it.  Mixed, anyway.
> My formal academic background is also best described as 'mixed', but
> early on I always felt a bit inadequate compared to my teachers, who
> seemed to just 'know' the 'answers' somehow, because they wrote them
> straight on to the blackboard.  Myself, I had to 'puzzle' them out by
> something like trial and error.  Also, their 'explanations' seemed to
> lead only to more questions.  This exasperated my teachers.  One day
> (I guess I must have been about 9)  I read a book of logic problems
> that not only contained the answers, but the author's account of how
> he'd reached them.  Turns out he'd used trial and error!  I remember
> it dawned on me like a bolt of lightning: "Everybody thinks like
> this!"  And thus reassured, I went on in this way.
> There's a corollary to this tale.  Many years later, I attended a
> seminar where the neuroscientist Karl Pribram was the principal
> presenter.  I was so stimulated by the dialogue that I 'kidnapped' him
> afterwards by giving him a lift to the house where we'd both been
> invited to dinner.  As he sat wearily in the passenger seat, I rambled
> on about this and that, and after a while this led to my 'sharing' my
> great 'Everybody thinks like that' insight.  "You're wrong." he said,
> and sank back into torpor.  My heart sank.  Then he sighed, and said:
> "Only people who can think at all, think like that."
> My professional career spans 35+ years in computer systems development
> in the private sector, from machine code and plug-board days, through
> assembler and a wide variety of high-level languages.   The hands-on
> part spanned more than 20 years and I worked originally in commercial
> applications development for systems vendors, focusing on elements of
> operating systems and failure and recovery methods.  I developed early
> versions of 'net-change' manufacturing planning and forecasting
> systems, and from 1989, was an early participant in the nascent on-
> line (originally phone-based) retail financial sector. I became Head
> of Systems Architecture and Head of Information Analysis for the first
> UK on-line bank, and Head of IT for an on-line retail insurer.  These
> days, I do part time IT and business consultancy, and dabble in topics
> like those on this list.  I've now achieved the status I've always
> sought: self-employed dilettante.
> I can't recall exactly when my interest in AI and 'mind body' issues
> began, but it was re-stimulated by John Searle's ideas as presented in
> the 1984 BBC Reith Lectures, which got me furiously thinking and
> reading about functionalism and then-current mind-brain theories like
> Pribram's Holonomic theory.  I reached a vague realisation that
> functionalism was incompatible with materialism, which is why I had a
> start of recognition when I encountered Bruno's arguments.  But I've
> really spent the intervening period just 'dilettanting' around the
> related areas - philosophy of mind, epistemology, QM, cosmology,
> Darwinism, etc. - as my enthusiasm and energy waxes and wanes.
> I've read or skimmed quite a lot of the book list others have
> mentioned, but definitely need more rigour on the math and logic
> background.  The existence of forums like this one has more or less
> kept my marriage intact when it might not have survived many further
> attempts to 'innocently' subvert ordinary conversations into
> 'epistomology' or some such nonsense.
> A few books that have triggered something or other, or that I often
> return to:
> The Fabric of Reality (Deutsch)
> The Conscious Mind (Chalmers)
> Wholeness and the Implicate Order (Bohm)
> The End of Time (Barbour)
> The Emperor's New Mind (Penrose)
> Theory of Nothing (Standish)
> Laws of Form (Spencer-Brown)
> The Quark and The Jaguar (Gell-Mann)
> Godel, Escher Bach (Hofstadter)
> The Mind's I (Hofstadter and Dennett)
> Consciousness Explained (Dennett)
> The Selfish Gene (Dawkins)
> The Blank Slate (Pinker)
> The Logic of Scientific Discovery (Popper)
> The Open Society and Its Enemies (Popper)
> The Man who mistook His Wife for a Hat (Sacks)
> The Society of Mind (Minsky)
> How Children Learn (Holt)
> The Act of Creation (Koestler)
> The Psychology of Learning Mathematics (Skemp)
> Frogs into Princes (Bandler and Grinder)
> The Complete Sherlock Holmes (Conan Doyle)
> Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass (Carroll)
> Foucault's Pendulum (Eco)
> >

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