Computation without RepresentationPhilosophical Studies (2008)
The received view is that computational states are individuated at least in part by their semantic properties. I offer an alternative, according to which computational states are individuated by their functional properties. Functional properties are specified by a mechanistic explanation without appealing to any semantic properties. The primary purpose of this paper is to formulate the alternative view of computational individuation, point out that it supports a robust notion of computational explanation, and defend it on the grounds of how computational states are individuated within computability theory and computer science. A secondary purpose is to show that existing arguments for the semantic view are defective.
- Computational States,
- Computational Individuation
Publication DateJanuary, 2008
Citation InformationPiccinini, G. (2008). Computation without Representation. Philosophical Studies, 137(2), 205–241. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11098-005-5385-4