Science

What Does it Mean to Have a Mind?

Posted 8 Feb 2007 at 20:49 UTC by steve Share This

Psychologists from Harvard University have reported on the results of a study of 2,000 people who answered a list of questions about the following entities: "a 7-week-old fetus, a 5-month-old infant, a 5-year-old girl, an adult woman, an adult man, a man in a persistent vegetative state, a frog, the family dog, a wild chimpanzee, a dead woman, God, and a sociable robot." They gained some interesting new insights into how humans perceive the idea of mind. Rather than the tradional view that we perceive mind as a continuum, the researchers now believe we perceive mind along two distinct dimensions: "agency, an individual's ability for self-control, morality and planning; and experience, the capacity to feel sensations such as hunger, fear and pain." The project is searching for answers to questions such as whether or not a robot could have a mind; or whether a machine could do something morally wrong. If you'd like to try the survey yourself, they offer an online version.

See more of the latest robot news!

Recent blogs

25 Jul 2014 mwaibel (Master)
20 Jul 2014 Flanneltron (Journeyer)
11 Jul 2014 shimniok (Journeyer)
3 Jul 2014 jmhenry (Journeyer)
3 Jul 2014 steve (Master)
2 Jul 2014 Petar.Kormushev (Master)
10 Jun 2014 robotvibes (Master)
10 May 2014 evilrobots (Observer)
2 Mar 2014 wedesoft (Master)
1 Dec 2013 AI4U (Observer)
X
Share this page