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Cognitive Architecture With Episodic Memory

Cognitive Architecture With Episodic Memory
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Copyright: 2021
Pages: 40
Source title: Reductive Model of the Conscious Mind
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Wieslaw Galus (Independent Researcher, Poland) and Janusz Starzyk (Ohio University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-5653-5.ch008


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The authors chose a provocative title for this book. In this provocation, there is an incentive for those who would like to understand what consciousness is. Their goal was to explain the phenomenon, which is perhaps even harder to understand than the emergence of life from inanimate matter. Through this work, they developed and described a reductive model of conscious mind named motivated emotional mind. Although the basis for episodic memory are real events that were observed by the agent, memorized episodes can also be generated in the agent's mind. The working memory supports explanation of the meaning of the whole scene by combining the meanings of its constituent elements and their relations. The observed scenes are stored in the episodic memory. An agent can build its value system to assess the significance of observed events and later use it to influence its behavior and its emotional states. Only the conscious being has the ability to remember episodes from its experiences. The conscious system must be able to imagine a hypothetical situation and plan its activities. Because episodic memories require the structures of the hippocampus or its equivalent, if the body has a hippocampus, it is potentially conscious. Working memory is responsible for temporarily storing information that has been perceived in the environment or retrieved from long-term memory. It is important for reasoning, decision-making, and behavioral control. It records stimuli processed in the deeper layers of the brain. In addition, working memory combines temporary storage and manipulates selected information to support cognitive functions. Embodied intelligence architecture discussed in this chapter is aimed at building an intelligent and conscious machines and its ability to learn is recognized as the most important feature of intelligence. Authors show that embodied minds contain certain memory structures, and it is through them that machines can be conscious. The organization of brain structures and their functions constitute a functional, reductive model of the conscious mind, called motivated emotional mind. Different functional blocks of this architecture process information simultaneously, sending interrupt signals to direct attention, change plans, monitor activities, and respond to external threats and opportunities. They also provide a conscious agent with personal memories, accumulated knowledge, skills, and desires, making the agent act fully autonomously. What is needed to build embodied, conscious machines? First of all, their sensing must be based on the observations and predictions of results of their own actions in the real world. This requires the development of sensorimotor coordination integrated with the machine value system. The second requirement is the development of learning methods and control of the robot's movements. This includes the development of motoric functions, activators, grippers, methods of movement, and navigation. The chapter ends with predictions for future development of conscious robots and elaboration on the life and death cycles for conscious minds.

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