Is “artificial consciousness” possible?

Is “artificial consciousness” possible?
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While it’s tempting to think that the brain is a computer, and therefore since we know how to make computers, we must be able to create artificial consciousness, I’m afraid this is not so. It is certainly true that the human brain is a processing device: it takes in input from the senses, processes that input according to a set of rules (which are themselves processed), and then produces output for our muscles based on the information obtained. Computers do essentially the same thing. But what we must recognize is that there is more going on in the brain than mere processing. The real question—and the challenge we face—is what happens when a brain creates a mind?

It’s one thing to make something that looks like a brain or acts like a brain; it’s quite another thing to create something that feels like a mind—or indeed even feels at all. It may be possible that we can build something with an architecture similar enough to our own brains that it becomes capable of creating an awareness of itself, but… will it be conscious? Or will it just be running through an elaborate set of algorithms?

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Is “artificial consciousness” possible?

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