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Meta-Morphogenesis: Evolution of mechanisms for producing minds

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“Alan Turing’s work on morphogenesis (see below) explored how micro-interactions in physicochemical structures might account for global transformations from a fertilized egg to an animal or plant, within a single organism.

I’ll outline a rudimentary theory of “meta-morphogenesis” that aims to show how, over generations, interactions between changing environments, changing animal morphology, and previously evolved information-processing capabilities might combine to produce increasingly complex forms of “informed control”, initially just control of physical behaviour, then later also informed control of information-processing. This potentially explains philosophically puzzling features of animal (including human) minds, including the existence of “qualia”. It is also related to the transformation of empirical knowledge into a “generative” or “deductive” form, a process labelled “Representational Redescription” by Annette Karmiloff-Smith[*]. I suspect that such processes provide the foundation for human mathematical competences.”

Admission free to CUCaTS members, £2 otherwise. Membership may also be bought at the door. As usual refreshments will be served 15 minutes before the start of the talk.

This talk is part of the Cambridge University Computing and Technology Society (CUCaTS) series.

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