The Axioms of Consciousness

Posted 24 Jun 2005 at 18:29 UTC by steve Share This

A Guardian Unlimited article gives an overview Igor Aleksander's work in machine consciousness. Aleksander believes there are five key components to consciousness that need to be developed in robots: a sense of self, imagination, focused attention, forward planning and emotion. He doesn't seem to believe that problems of ethics or freewill exist either in robots or man: "A properly functioning conscious machine is going to drive your car and it's going to drive it safely. It will be very pleased when it does that, it's going to be worried if it has an accident. If suddenly it decides, I'm going to kill my passenger and drive into a wall, that's a malfunction. Human beings can malfunction in that way [too]." Aleksander is known for working on WISARD, the first face recognition system, in the early 1980s. He also developed MAGNUS (Multi Automation General Neural Unit System), which is regarded by some as the first conscious machine. For more see this online interview with Aleksander or Aleksander's presentation on Brain Inspired Computation.

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