Home > Meeting Topics and Material > Weekly QUEST Discussion Topics, Sept 20

Weekly QUEST Discussion Topics, Sept 20

QUEST topics for Sept 20, 2013

1.) The recent article by Evans and Stanovich – “Dual-Process Theories of Higher Cognition: Advancing the Debate” : Dual-process and dual-system theories in both cognitive and social psychology have been subjected to a number of recently published criticisms. However, they have been attacked as a category, incorrectly assuming there is a generic version that applies to all. We identify and respond to 5 main lines of argument made by such critics. We agree that some of these arguments have force against some of the theories in the literature but believe them to be overstated. We argue that the dual-processing distinction is supported by much recent evidence in cognitive science. Our preferred theoretical approach is one in which rapid autonomous processes (Type 1) are assumed to yield default responses unless intervened on by distinctive higher order reasoning processes (Type 2). What defines the difference is that Type 2 processing supports hypothetical thinking and load heavily on working memory — will be discussed with respect to impacts on engineering solutions that are consistent with Type 1 / Type 2 processing as decision aids for better human-computer symbiotic tasks – and discuss the QUEST position that all Type 2 processes are done with hypothetical thinking (imagined present, imagined past and imagined future).

2.) The second point we would like to discuss is how we can take the ideas of Vernon Mountcastle — He discovered and characterized the columnar organization of the cerebral cortex in the 1950s. This discovery was a turning point in investigations of the cerebral cortex, as nearly all cortical studies of sensory function after Mountcastle’s 1957 paper[1] on the somatosensory cortex used columnar organization as their basis. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vernon_Mountcastle ) — specifically his position that – “In 1978 Mountcastle proposed that all parts of the neocortex operate based on a common principle, with the cortical column being the unit of computation” often termed as ‘cortex is cortex’ – so the question on the floor is how to take an approach to implementing Type 1 processing and with the same engineering approach be able to implement Type 2 processing. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vernon_Mountcastle

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