Kevin O'Regan: Why machines will soon have phenomenal consciousness
12 May 2021 - 12 May 2021
Most philosophers and scientists are convinced that there is a "hard problem" of consciousness and an "explanatory gap" preventing us from understanding why experiences feel the way they do and why they have "something it's like”. My claim is that this attitude may derive from the (understandable) desire to preserve the last remnants of human uniqueness before the onslaught of conscious robots. My "sensorimotor" approach to understanding phenomenal consciousness suggests that this is a mistake. If we really think deeply about what we mean by having a phenomenal experience, then there is no reason why machines should not be conscious very soon, i.e. in the next decades

The speaker

Prof. Kevin O’Regan, CNRS, Université Paris Descartes (personal website