By Gary F. Marcus
An try and combine theories approximately how the brain works, one who says that the brain is a computer-like manipulator of symbols, and one other that says that the brain is a big community of neurons operating jointly in parallel.
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Additional resources for Algebraic Mind: Integrating Connectionism and Cognitive Science
Hidden units and output units are not shown. localist and distributed representations. While all models that use distributed representations allocate more than one variable per node, it is not the case that all localist models allocate a single node per variable. In fact, most localist models allocate more than one node per variable. Consider Elman’s sentence-prediction model. Here, the input to the model is a single variable that we might think of as current word. Although any given instantiation of that variable (say, cat) will activate only a single node, every input node can potentially indicate an instantiation of the variable current word.
It is certainly possible to define the term symbol in a way that means that symbol-manipulators have them and multilayer perceptrons do not, but it is just as easy to define the term in a way that entails that both symbol-manipulators and multilayer perceptrons have them. It might even be possible to define the term in such a way that 32 Chapter 2 neither classical artificial intelligence (AI) programs (which are usually taken to be symbol-manipulators) nor multilayer perceptrons have them (for further discussion of this latter possibility, see Searle, 1992).
But not all multilayer perceptrons use distributed representations. Elman’s sentence-prediction model for example, uses a single node for each distinct word that it represents. Moreover, not all symbol-manipulators use localist representations. For example, digital computers are canonical symbol-manipulators, and some of their most canonical symbols are distributed encodings. , Chomsky & Halle, 1968). My point is that attempts to differentiate multilayer perceptrons from symbol-manipulators cannot rest on questions such as whether there are context-independent mental representations of categories or whether mental representations are distributed.
Algebraic Mind: Integrating Connectionism and Cognitive Science by Gary F. Marcus