Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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Emotion, philosophy of mind: is usually defined by examples such as joy, fear, anger in order to distinguish it from other internal states. It is controversial whether emotions are triggered solely by external circumstances. See also sensations, perception, mental states, mind states, consciousness, stimuli, introspection, other minds.

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Item Summary Meta data

Marvin Minsky on Emotions - Dictionary of Arguments

I 163
Emotion/Artificial Intelligence/Minsky: (…) our culture wrongly teaches us that thoughts and feelings lie in almost separate worlds. In fact, they're always intertwined. In the next few sections we'll propose to regard emotions not as separate from thoughts in general, but as varieties or types of thoughts, each based on a different brain-machine that specializes in some particular domain of thought. In infancy, these protospecialists have little to do with one another, but later they grow together as they learn to exploit one another, albeit without understanding one another.
I 165
Proto-specialists: [there could be protospecialists for hunger, thirst, defense etc…]. t would not usually be practical to make an animal that way. With all those separate specialists, we'd end up with a dozen different sets of heads and hands and feet. Not only would it cost too much to carry and feed all those organs; they'd also get in one another's way! Despite that inconvenience, there actually do exist some animals that work this way and thus can do many things at once. Genetically, the swarms of social ants and bees are really multibodied individuals whose different organs move around freely. But most animals economize by having all their proto-specialists share common sets of organs for their interactions with the outer world.
Another kind of economy comes from allowing the proto-specialists to share what they learn.
Whenever we try to solve problems of increasing complexity, whatever particular techniques we already know become correspondingly less adequate, and it becomes more important to be able to acquire new kinds of knowledge and skills. In the end, most of the mechanisms we need for any highly ambitious goal can be shared with most of our other goals.
I 172
Development of emotions/Minsky: Our earliest emotions are built-in processes in which inborn proto-specialists control what happens in our brains. Soon we learn to overrule those schemes, as our surroundings teach us what we ought to feel. Parents, teachers, friends, and finally our self-ideals impose upon us new rules for how to use the remnants of those early states: they teach us how and when to feel and show each kind of emotion sign.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Minsky I
Marvin Minsky
The Society of Mind New York 1985

Minsky II
Marvin Minsky
Semantic Information Processing Cambridge, MA 2003

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2021-06-17
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