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Article
Implementation and Indeterminacy
Conferences in Research and Practice in Information Technology
  • Curtis Brown, Trinity University
Document Type
Article
Publication Date
1-1-2004
Disciplines
Abstract

David Chalmers has defended an account of what it is for a physical system to implement a computation. The account appeals to the idea of a “combinatorial-state automaton” or CSA. It is unclear whether Chalmers intends the CSA to be a computational model in the usual sense, or merely a convenient formalism into which instances of other models can be translated. I argue that the CSA is not a computational model in the usual sense because CSAs do not perspicuously represent algorithms, are too powerful both in that they can perform any computation in a single step and in that without so far unspecified restrictions they can “compute” the uncomputable, and are too loosely related to physical implementations.

Citation Information
Curtis Brown, “Implementation and Indeterminacy,” in J. Weckert and Y. Al-Saggaf, eds., Conferences in Research and Practice in Information Technology 37 (2004): 27-31.