Re: Searle's Chinese Room Argument

From: Harnad, Stevan (
Date: Thu Feb 27 1997 - 18:49:01 GMT

> From: Dunsdon, Graham <>
> "Intrinsic" referred to the meaning embedded in a symbol system.
> Extrinsic would be the meaning embedded in the invariant properties of
> the object ( ie., those which are generally sufficient to identify one
> object from another.

What is "embedded meaning"?

> My proposition is that the invariant properties of description (ie
> those which extrinsically are sufficient generally to visually identify
> one object from another - by shadows or angles for example) are one
> aspect of the structure of the mind which interacts with the symbol
> system.

Kid-sib is here being pummeled with adverbs -- extrinsically...
generally... visually. You'll have to say it again in kid-sib-speak:
Are you talking about features of objects? features of shadows on the
senses? features of an internal representation (analog? symbolic?)?
What do you mean by a description? The words in this screen? Words in
the head?

These are the reactions you can except from kid-sib if you try to
clobber him with adverbs or long words...

> are you saying that SOME objects are not linked as you describe or that
> some symbols are not? Dunsdon, Graham.

I was saying that my theory of how symbols get connected to the objects
in the world is just a theory. There are other theories, including
theories that do away with symbols altogether (so, having no symbols,
they have no symbol grounding problem either).

Within my theory, some symbols get connected to objects directly
(through neural nets that learn to detect them from features
in their sensory shadows), and other symbols get grounded by
a description made up of already grounded symbols.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Tue Feb 13 2001 - 16:23:50 GMT