Is Marijuana a Dangerous Drug?
With evidence of marijuana use dating back to the Neolithic Age, it is easy to see why its usage is still very common in today’s society. The most recent statistics suggest that one in nine people in Australia (11%) have used marijuana in the past 12 months and of these 16% of them use it on a daily basis.
The Extended Mind Hypothesis
The idea that we use pieces of our external environment to aid in our cognitive abilities has always been visible yet has remained somewhat ignored as our computational processes were always considered to be circumscribed to those that transpire under skin and skull in the biological brain. Then in 1998 Andy Clark and David Chalmers proposed a radical new form of externalism called the Extended Mind Hypothesis. Referred to as active externalism because of the active role the environment plays in driving cognitive processes it came under attack from a number of angles.
Forensic Pathology: The In’s and Out’s
Forensic pathology is yet another important field within the forensic sciences, yet not for those with a weak stomach. If you have ever seen how they conduct an autopsy you’ll know what i’m talking about, and for those of you that haven’t, just imagine systematically slicing open sections of the body and organs, including removing the brain, emptying the stomach and a few other things that although necessary, look very macabre – like something out of Silence of the Lambs.
The Classical Computational Theory of Mind
There are a number of different versions of the Computational Theory of Mind (CTM) but in its classical form it states that thinking is a computational process involving mental representations. These mental representations or symbols are all contained within their own unique language, the Language of Thought (LOT). A common catch phrase often seen accompanying the classical CTM is that ‘the mind is to the brain what the program is to the hardware’ but as easy an analogy as this is for those learning about the classical CTM it also opens the theory up to a whole world of criticisms and flaws.
Political & Moral Atomism: Taylor’s Reasons For Disagreeing
Atomism was always used as a very broad term, unfortunately though it was usually used by people attacking the theory rather than supporting it, which lead to a lot of philosophers referring to atomism by other names such as individualism. Hence when it comes to defining what atomism is in the eyes of Taylor, a lot of clarification is needed to establish exactly what it is he is referring to.
Evolutionary Theory: Selfish Gene or Not?
Richard Dawkins, the key proponent of the selfish gene theory of evolution, revolutionized the way evolution was viewed by proposing that organisms are simply the ‘vehicles’ for genes, and that genes preserve their own existence by promoting qualities and behaviours that increase the organisms chance of survival into the next generation. Dawkins view of evolutionary theory makes it a lot easier to understand ideas such as kin selection and altruistic behaviour, however it does encounter some large theoretical problems such as those of incipient stages. The main objection to Dawkins theory comes in the form of Stephen Jay Gould who is one of the key proponents of the rival to the selfish gene theory; the punctuated equilibrium theory of evolution. This is just one of many available alternatives but is definitely the one that has attained the most attention. Other alternatives to Dawkins view are those of gaia theory, game theory, group selection and individual selection but all have their difficulties.
Argument Summary: Stephen Pinker – How The Mind Works
Steven Pinker, in this particularly early chapter in his book, scrutinizes briefly a range of theories around the age old mind-body problem, which in turn leads us into Alan Turing and Turing machines The motivation behind discussing these is to give us an adequate launch point to discuss the computational theory of mind.
Folk Psychology Is Here To Stay
After more than 2000 years, folk psychology appears as though it is here to stay, nonetheless there are a number of philosophers, psychologists and the like who argue that folk psychology is a theory, and that that theory is false. However these people seem to jump rather quickly to this conclusion and upon closer inspection their arguments fall apart.