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Can a Machine Be Conscious? How?

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Abstract:

Asking whether a machine can be conscious is rather like asking whether one has stopped beating one's wife: The question is so heavy with assumptions that either answer would be incriminating! The answer, of course, is: It depends entirely on what you mean by 'machine'! If you mean the current generation of man-made devices (toasters, ovens, cars, computers, today's robots), the answer is: almost certainly not.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Centre de Neuroscience de la Cognition (CNC), Universite du Quebec a Montreal, CP 8888 Succursale Centre-Ville, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3C 3P8., Email: harnad@uqam.ca

Publication date: January 1, 2003

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