Wednesday, 19 December 2007

One-track nature of mind

Awareness singly draws its attention to a specific stimulus and occupies itself in its computational processing ignoring other signals or stimuli or to put more correctly on a single aspect of the pattern formed by a given interface ignoring completely other aspects inherent in the interface which have useful information processing potential.

This comes out from the work of Chris Diorio and Rajesh P.N. Rao published in Nature magazine, June 2000 edition, where in their study of neural circuits in silicon they point out that neuronal networks exhibit nonlinear behaviour by selecting the strongest of an array of competing stimuli and suppressing the weaker ones referred to as distractors. The neuronal network further applies multiplicative responses to the selected stimulus amplifying its output activity. They refer to the linear amplification process as analogue and the nonlinear selection as digital. Neurons can have analogue and digital circuit responses. Behaviour that derives from a common set of active neurons is linear in the input, whereas behaviour that derives from a comparison (to effect selection) among different sets of active neurons (more than one stimulus, an aspect of an interface assisted pattern presented to the brain for processing) is nonlinear in the input.

The terms used in constructing the cognitive architecture, by A. J. Wells can easily be taken to represent the concepts of hardware and drives as he attempts the same extrapolation by referring as part of the structural make-up of the cognitive system aspects of the physical world which are not contiguous or coherent and also his architectures include elements which can be thought as processes rather than structural parts of a machine. The sense of architecture implied pertains to an image of a world coherent in conception but fragmented in perception. It might appear to our senses as being separate dissociated fragmented but these fragmented parts are other than fragmented, they are parts of a greater whole intrinsically connected to each other to perform the tasks, functions which the brain understands and undertakes. It approaches Stuart Kaufman's unified reality view, of the world.

Suffice to add that the stimulus selected for processing is determined by the individual as a result of previously learned processes biased towards an individual's needs and wants conditioned in ways the individual has formed its personality make-up.

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