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Do Connectionist Representations Earn their Explanatory Keep?

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In this paper I assess the explanatory role of internal representations in connectionist models of cognition. Focusing on both the internal `hidden' units and the connection weights between units, I argue that the standard reasons for viewing these components as representations are inadequate to bestow an explanatorily useful notion of representation. Hence, nothing would be lost from connectionist accounts of cognitive processes if we were to stop viewing the weights and hidden units as internal representations

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Philosophy, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, USA

Publication date: March 1, 1997

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