Thursday, April 01, 2010

Just how conscious are we?

New Scientist appears to transcend its slide into the crapper of the past few years with a serious of vignettes on different aspects of consciousness.

First, unconscious reactions that we later label as products of conscious free will appear to occur seconds before a "conscious determination," not just Benjamin Libet's well-known 300 millisecond delay.

Second, it appears that consciousness is not "vs." unconsciousness, but that the two are on a spectrum.

In light of all of this, in addition to it becoming clearer that the human mind does not operate like a computer, it's clearer that we are a long ways away from creating a conscious machine, something that would pass a Turing test when viewed by a true skeptic.

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