Thursday, July 17, 2014

Issues with sensor upgrades and Asa

In nature, the brain and intelligence coevolve with the senses and effectors. In humans the visual cortex is a substantial part of the brain. Asa H has been connected to simple LEGO NXT sensors as well as simple visual inputs (see earlier blogs like 12 March 2013, 16 Feb. 2013, 14 Feb. 2013, 13 June 2013). Concepts/semantics grounded in terms of these simple sensory signaling devices may be lost or distorted if/as we try to upgrade to richer sensory systems. 

In humans, some limited reorganization occurs in the brain when sensory input changes (say after loss of an eye or a hand or, conversely, if a child is given reading glasses).  In Asa H some relearning also occurs.  But if large scale improvements are made in, say, Asa's vision system will the previously learned mental concepts be useful?  Or should/must we start learning from scratch with the new sensors in place? Meaning can be very sensitive to the data stream that has been seen (see, for example, pages 381-382 of Kelly's book The Logic of Reliable Inquiry, Oxford, 1996).

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