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Volume 17, Issue 1, Spring 2013

Normativity and Freedom

Alistair Welchman
Pages 229-249

Heidegger among the Robots

Cognitive science and artificial intelligence have undergone some revolutionary changes in the past two decades. From an emphasis on disembodied cognitive functions like chess and logic, they now foreground the embodied and environmentally embedded nature of intelligent actions. Some-both philosophy of cognitive science and practitioners-have sought to explain this shift in terms of a Heideggerian critique of the residually Cartesian assumptions of the traditional picture of disembodied cognition. I support the opening up new areas of research practice formally closed off by tacit and unjustified theoretical presuppositions, but argue that these changes are and have been warranted by biological and information-theoretic concerns and not phenomenological ones derived from Heidegger's thought.

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