excerpt from J. M. Balkin, Cultural Software


The growth of cognitive science and the search for forms of artificial intelligence have led naturally to comparisons between human beings and computers. One of the most important debates currently raging in the philosophy of mind is the extent to which mind should be defined functionally in terms of information states, like those in a computer. Some philosophers of mind have gone so far as to argue that the human mind is essentially indistinguishable from a computer, while others have asserted that the intentional nature of human intelligence makes such comparisons thoroughly inappropriate.(4)

4. Compare P. N. Johnson-Laird, The Computer and the Mind (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1988); Hilary Putnam, Representation and Reality (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1988); and John R. Searle, Minds, Brains, and Science (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1984).