TY - JOUR
N2 - We examine Turing’s intriguing claim, made in the philosophy journal Mind, that he had created a short computer program of such a nature that it would be impossible “to discover by observation sufficient about it to predict its future behaviour, and this within a reasonable time, say a thousand years” (Turing, 1950, p. 457). A program like this would naturally have cryptographic applications, and we explore how the program would most likely have functioned. Importantly, a myth has recently grown up around this program of Turing’s, namely that it can be used as the basis of an argument—and was so used by Turing—to support the conclusion that it is impossible to infer a detailed mathematical description of the human brain within a practicable timescale. This alleged argument of Turing’s has been dubbed “Turing’s Wager” (Thwaites, Soltan, Wieser, Nimmo-Smith, 2017, p. 3) We demonstrate that this argument—in fact nowhere to be found in Turing’s work—is worthless, since it commits a glaring logical fallacy. “Turing’s Wager” gives no grounds for pessimism about the prospects for understanding and simulating the human brain.
L1 - http://journals.pan.pl/Content/128993/PDF-MASTER/023_Copeland_Proudfoot.pdf
L2 - http://journals.pan.pl/Content/128993
PY - 2023
EP - 36
KW - Alan Turing
KW - Turing’s Wager
KW - mechanized encryption
KW - laws of behaviour
KW - unspecifiability of the mind
KW - brain modelling
KW - whole-brain simulation
KW - cipher machines
KW - Enigma
KW - fish
KW - Tunny
KW - early computer-based cryptography
A1 - Copeland, B. Jack
A1 - Proudfoot, Diane
PB - Instytut Filozofii i Socjologii PAN
PB - Instytut filozofii UMCS
VL - tom 11
DA - 2023.10.24
T1 - Turing’s Wager?
SP - 23
UR - http://journals.pan.pl/dlibra/publication/edition/128993
T2 - Filozofia i Nauka
ER -