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Synopsis

In Emergence, Mind, and Consciousness, author Gary A. Lucas does something that many consider impossible: he bridges the gap between a bottom-up description of brain mechanisms and the top-down emergence of mental processes. The result is a comprehensive yet readily understandable explanation of how consciousness emerges.

Lucas, however, strives to do more. He seeks to design an artificial agent with all the essential properties of the human mind? consciousness, declarative memory, a sense of self, reasoning skills, language, and social identity. His account is mechanistic, and yet, as the bio-inspired networks are linked to emergent mental properties, we come to understand that we can truly construct a conscious agent. We have a model for how to build one.

If you?re interested in the emergent properties of mind, consciousness, cognition, self-awareness, social belongingness, or the possibility of constructing a robotic agent with such properties, then this is essential reading. It is conscious mind explained on a level that even a robot will understand it.

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