Re: "Boy with Incredible Brain"

From: Ben Goertzel (
Date: Fri Mar 24 2006 - 08:42:06 MST

> The purpose is not to build Searle's Chinese room, just to see what
> the fellow could accomplish. Whether, for instance, thorough-going
> Bayesian decisions could help him achieve his goals, in a way that
> super-geniuses tend not to.
> - Phil


Well, it seems to me that the failure of intelligent, educated,
generally reasonable people to achieve their goals is not usually
through conscious, irrational thinking. It is more often through
(often very deep-seated) unconscious irrational thinking.

So in order to be effective at helping a person to better achieve
their personal goals, the "thorough-going Bayesian decisions" you
mention teaching them to carry out would have to be *really*
thorough-going -- penetrating into parts of the mind that are usually
unconscious and largely "spontaneously self-organizing" rather than
guided direction by conscious, reflective processes.

The hard part here, from the learner's and teacher's perspective both,
would seem to be the aspect of

* thorough self-awareness and extension of reflective control over a
broader part of the mind than usual,

~not~ the aspect of

* Bayesian reasoning or any other particular inferential methodology.


-- Ben G

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