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Anigrafs: Experiments in Cooperative…
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Anigrafs: Experiments in Cooperative Cognitive Architecture (MIT Press)

by Whitman Richards

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0262527782, Paperback)

In this book, Whitman Richards offers a novel and provocative proposal for understanding decision making and human behavior. Building on Valentino Braitenberg's famous "vehicles," Richards describes a collection of mental organisms that he calls "daemons" -- virtual correlates of neural modules. Daemons have favored choices and make decisions that control behaviors of the group to which they belong, with each daemon preferring a different outcome. Richards arranges these preferences in graphs, linking similar choices, which thus reinforce each other. "Anigrafs" refers to these two components -- animals, or the mental organisms (agents or daemons), and the graphs that show similarity relations. Together these two components are the basis of a new cognitive architecture.

In Richards's account, a collection of daemons compete for control of the cognitive system in which they reside; the challenge is to get the daemons to agree on one of many choices. Richards explores the results of group decisions, emphasizing the Condorcet voting procedure for aggregating preferences. A neural mechanism is proposed. Anigrafs presents a series of group decisions that incorporate simple and complex movements, as well as aspects of cognition and belief. Anigrafs concludes with a section on "metagrafs," which chart relationships between different anigraf models.

(retrieved from Amazon Wed, 22 Jul 2015 11:43:09 -0400)

"In this book, Whitman Richards offers a novel and provocative proposal for understanding decision making and human behavior. Building on Valentino Braitenberg's famous 'vehicles,' Richards describes a collection of mental organisms that he calls 'daemons'--virtual correlates of neural modules. Daemons have favored choices and make decisions that control behaviors of the group to which they belong, with each daemon preferring a different outcome. Richards arranges these preferences in graphs, linking similar choices, which thus reinforce each other. 'Anigrafs' refers to these two components--animals, or the mental organisms (agents or daemons), and the graphs that show similarity relations. Together these two components are the basis of a new cognitive architecture. In Richards's account, a collection of daemons compete for control of the cognitive system in which they reside; the challenge is to get the daemons to agree on one of many choices. Richards explores the results of group decisions, emphasizing the Condorcet voting procedure for aggregating preferences. A neural mechanism is proposed. Anigrafs presents a series of group decisions that incorporate simple and complex movements, as well as aspects of cognition and belief. Anigrafs concludes with a section on 'metagrafs,' which chart relationships between different anigraf models"--MIT CogNet.… (more)

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