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For the intrepid explorers of consciousness

By Timothy Cocks Philosophy of mind 10 Feb 2017

Fantastic talk from Anil Seth; cogent, accessible and wide ranging. Worth investing the hour to watch it.




Seth is a neuroscientist and clearly pins his colours to the mast – just the title of his talk is suggestive of the notion that the brain (and the brain alone) explains consciousness. Others would disagree, but this in no way detracts from a well structured presentation of Seth’s position.

Seth covers a number of topics, ranging from the Hard Problem of consciousness to Helmholtzian ideas of perception as inference, the Bayesian Brain, Conant and Ashby’s Good Regulator theorem, Karl Friston’s statistical mechanics derivations of active inference in action and perception, and his own extension of predictive coding and active inference to interoception and emotion.

I did say intrepid…


…but for anyone interested in where some of the sharpest minds in philosophy and cognitive neuroscience are heading (and possibly converging on consensus) in the next 5 years, Seth’s presentation is a great taster, a bit like one of those beer tasting platter’s when your not quite ready to commit to a pint.

-Tim Cocks


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