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P042


Entangling mind and machine: artificial intelligence, neuroscience and neurotechnology 
Convenors:
Tara Mahfoud (University of Essex)
Christine Aicardi (King's College London)
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Format:
Traditional Open Panel

Short Abstract:

In this panel, we seek to address two questions: 1) What can previous iterations of entangling mind and machine tell us about contemporary AI, neuroscience and neurotechnology? 2) How are current entanglements different, and what do they mean for future AI, neuroscience and neurotechnology?

Long Abstract:

The history of neuroscience is one intertwined with the history of building computational systems and machinic brains/minds – from Alan Turing’s thinking machines, to cybernetic brains, and more recently, the use of experimental and theoretical neuroscience in the development of Google DeepMind’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) techniques. Brains and minds have been, and continue to be, a source of inspiration for AI. Artificial neural networks at the core of recent AI developments are inspired by biological neural networks in animal brains, and new brain-inspired neuromorphic hardware architectures are designed to support them. Biological realism, however, is not the primary concern of AI. It takes inspiration from biology only in order to build more efficient AI tools - improving information processing performance for a vast range of activities, and lowering energy consumption. In this panel, we seek to address two overarching questions: 1) What can previous iterations of entangling mind and machine tell us about contemporary AI, neuroscience and neurotechnology? 2) How are current entanglements between mind and machines different, and what do they mean for future AI, neuroscience and neurotechnology? We invite contributions that will help tackle these topics from various perspectives and various locations, taking diachronic as well as synchronic approaches. Possible questions are: What are the epistemic, political, social and ethical consequences of these entanglements? What epistemic communities and institutions (military, corporate, etc.) are established around these different practices and around different conceptions of intelligence – human, animal, more-than-human? What kinds and what aspects of living organisms are brought up in simulation, mimicry or machinic reproduction of ‘intelligence’? How are they pared down, distorted – or rendered invisible?

Accepted papers: