Category Archives: Consciousness

If AI becomes conscious, how will we know?

Science reports: In 2021, Google engineer Blake Lemoine made headlines—and got himself fired—when he claimed that LaMDA, the chatbot he’d been testing, was sentient. Artificial intelligence (AI) systems, especially so-called large language models such as LaMDA and ChatGPT, can certainly seem conscious. But they’re trained on vast amounts of text to imitate human responses. So… Read More »

Scientists observe a surge of activity correlated with consciousness in the dying brain

PsyPost reports: A recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has presented preliminary findings suggesting there can be a surge of brain activity linked to consciousness during the dying process. The new study aimed to investigate the brain activity of patients during the dying process, particularly focusing on whether there… Read More »

ChatGPT can’t think – consciousness is something entirely different to today’s AI

Illus_man / Shutterstock By Philip Goff, Durham University There has been shock around the world at the rapid rate of progress with ChatGPT and other artificial intelligence created with what’s known as large language models (LLMs). These systems can produce text that seems to display thought, understanding and even creativity. But can these systems really… Read More »

Consciousness begins with feeling, not thinking

Antonio Damasio and Hanna Damasio write: Please pause for a moment and notice what you are feeling now. Perhaps you notice a growing snarl of hunger in your stomach or a hum of stress in your chest. Perhaps you have a feeling of ease and expansiveness, or the tingling anticipation of a pleasure soon to… Read More »

The mysterious inner life of the octopus

Martha Henriques writes: It was a big night for Inky the octopus. The day’s visitors had been and gone, and now his room in the aquarium was deserted. In a rare oversight, the lid of his tank had been left ajar. The common New Zealand octopus had been without female company for some time, sharing… Read More »

The octopus dreams of crabs

Laura Miller writes: John James Audubon was wrong. The great naturalist may have illustrated and compiled 1827’s Birds of America, a pioneering work of ornithology, but thanks to a series of sloppy experiments on turkey vultures, he insisted that birds can’t smell. This was taken for granted until the 1960s when two women scientists in… Read More »

The man rethinking the definition of reality

Tom Chatfield writes: If you woke up one day and discovered that you were living in a virtual world – that everything you’d ever known was, like the Matrix, a form of hyper-realistic simulation – what would this imply for your hopes, dreams and experiences? Would it reveal them all to be lies: deceptions devoid… Read More »

I feel, therefore I am

Antonio Damasio writes: In the beginning was not the word; that much is clear. Life sailed forth without words or thoughts, without feelings or reasons, devoid of minds or consciousness. Not that the universe of the living was ever simple, quite the contrary. It was complex from its inception, four billion years ago. But living… Read More »