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How the Body Shapes the Way We Think: A New View of Intelligence (Bradford Books)

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ISBN-13: 000-0262162393
ISBN-10: 9780262162395
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How the Body Shapes the Way We Think: A New View of Intelligence (Bradford Books) + Understanding Intelligence (Bradford Books) + Vehicles: Experiments in Synthetic Psychology
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Editorial Reviews

Review

After shedding a harsh new light on the Cartesian flaws at the heart of much of mainstream cognitive science, Wheeler carefully and persuasively builds a case for an alternative Heideggerian approach, grounding his arguments in current empirical work in AI. Superbly written with great clarity and energy (not to mention scholarship), this is a very important book for all serious students of cognitive science and its constituent disciplines -- from AI to philosophy of mind.

(Phil Husbands, Professor of Artificial Intelligence, University of Sussex)

About the Author

Rolf Pfeifer is Professor of Computer Science and Director of the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory in the Department of Informatics at the University of Zurich. He is the author of Understanding Intelligence (MIT Press, 1999).
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Product Details

  • Series: Bradford Books
  • Hardcover: 394 pages
  • Publisher: A Bradford Book (October 27, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780262162395
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262162395
  • ASIN: 0262162393
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #494,876 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a 5th year biomedical engineering undergraduate student at Georgia Tech who has done a little bit of research in neuroengineering and who had little background on the concept of embodiment before reading this book. I was drawn to read the book when I listened to an interview of Dr. Pfeifer on Dr. Ginger Campbell's Brain Science Podcast (episode #25); particularly when Dr. Pfeifer said during the interview, "...the brain is always embedded into a physical organism which then also has sensors, actuators that mediate the connection of the brain to the real world." Therefore, I went into reading this book with the intent to better understand the philosophical problems behind defining `embodied intelligence' and to see how the brain is connected with anatomical structures which may already pre-process information from the external world through sensory-motor feedback loops.

After reading the book I think I accomplished my intent and more. I think this book is an incredible learning resource for readers who want to learn more about artificial intelligence in general. The book simplifies many complex, fragmented advancements in the artificial intelligence community into simple categories and schemas - through a `theory of intelligence' which contains components like redundancy, sensory-motor coordination, ecological balance, parallel/loosely coupled processes, value, etc. As you read this book, Pfiefer and Bongard repeat these conceptual themes through solid examples in robotics (e.g. M-tran, Slimebot, passive dynamic walker, Denise, Eyebot, Stumpy, etc.), which gave me a profound respect for robotics researchers and the challenges that they face in seemingly very simple design problems (e.g. like walking or running).
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By B.THERAULAZ ACTIONTYPE on April 27, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is a must for who wants to understand the Embodiment principles. The content is clear and humble in comparison with the challenge of giving such information to a broad audience. Please take the time to read it through!
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3 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Robert Jones on June 22, 2008
Format: Hardcover
On page 18 Pfeifer and Bongard claim that "intelligence always requires a body." They may be right but I do not find sufficiently convincing arguments in their book (How the body shapes the way we think).
Perhaps the demand for real time operation and the simultaneous need to control computational complexity result in the need for highly parallel inputs and outputs. These many input and output devices, however they might be configured, would then constitute a "body." (They could be distributed across space in a way the human body can not be. This would constitute a superiority for AIs.)
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