Challenges for interactivist-constructivist robotics

Interactivist Summer Institute 2007. Paris, France: The American University of Paris (2007) .

The American University of Paris


The interactivist-constructivist (IC) approach to cognitive systems (Bickhard, 1993; Bickhard and Campbell, 1996; Indurkhya, 1992; Christensen and Hooker, 2000) offers a sound framework for understanding cognition and representation and for designing genuinely intelligent artificial systems. Motivated either by theoretical considerations, by the problems of classical artificial intelligence and robotics or by biological inspiration, there is now a substantial body of work that is guided by principles similar to the IC ones, directed towards the development of intelligent embodied agents that learn by interacting with the environment. This body of work, mostly accumulated during the last decade, is probably best represented by the biannual International Conferences on the Simulation of Adaptive Behavior (e.g., Meyer and Wilson, 1991; Nolfi et al., 2006). However, we still lack artificial systems capable of representing the world, in the IC sense, or artificial systems that feature genuine, adaptive intelligence. Why it is so? The purpose of this presentation is to pinpoint the factors that still prevent us to build such systems and to give a speculative suggestion on how we can overcome the present impasse.

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