Macquarie University
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Models of neural computation ;: an examination of David Chalmers’ causal theory of the mind

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posted on 2022-03-28, 13:23 authored by Dinyar Mistry
David Chalmers has defended a causal version of the Computational Theory of the Mind (CTM) by formulating an abstract computational object called a Combinatorial State Automata (CSA) which he argues can cover the structure of different abstract computational objects such as Finite State Automata, Turing Machines, Cellular Automata etc. He views implementation as the bridge between formal computation and physical computation. He defines implementation as an isomorphism between causal processes of a physical object and the formal structure of a computation. He uses his causal version of CTM to connect computation and cognition by defending a thesis of computational sufficiency and uses computation as an explanatory framework for cognitive processes and behaviour. In my thesis I examine Chalmers’ views to see whether his argument stands up to scrutiny and whether his views are supported by the data of neuroscience. Where there are shortcomings I modify and extend Chalmers’ theory to make it compliant.


Table of Contents

1. Introduction -- 2. Chalmers on implementation and cognition -- 3. Chalmers' causal theory of the mind and neuroscience -- 4. Evaluation of Chalmers' theory -- 5. Conclusion.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 79-82

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of Philosophy

Department, Centre or School

Department of Philosophy

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Colin Klein


Copyright Dinyar Mistry 2015. Copyright disclaimer:






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