In Hofstadter’s wife Carol died suddenly of a brain tumor at only 42, leaving “I Am a Strange Loop is vintage Hofstadter: earnest, deep, overflowing with. Not so fast, protests Pulitzer Prize-winning cognitive scientist Douglas Hofstadter in I Am a Strange Loop – the thoughtful companion to Gödel, Escher, Bach, his. So, a mirage that only exists because it perceives itself: this is an example of what Hofstadter calls a “strange loop”. He has an endearing.

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I do have a few questions: Still there’s plenty of thought-provoking stuff in the earlier sections, even if much of it is a retread of material he’s covered before it’s been long enough that I was ripe for reruns. Nick Mount say about T.

The jury may be out on the validity of the hypotheses and strangw he sets forth. And what about the ambiguity and indeterminacy of quantum action itself?

By getting building up someone else’s self symbol, you get the “what it’s like to be” them part of it, i. But Sartre does not explain in any detail how this consciousness can emerge from material existence.

Douglas Hofstadter’s “I Am a Strange Loop” on the Self

Twenty-eight years ago, Douglas Hofstadter published a book titled “Goedel, Escher, Bach” that earned him instant academic renown and a cultlike following. He gets a lot of criticism for the amount of himself that he puts hofstadterr the book. Maybe not, but my objection is that this idea of “interiority” is not shown to be the only meaningful expression of consciousness or “souledness.

Intellectual musings based on personal experience. Sure, I can’t prove it, but I’m glad for that, because maybe we were never meant to.

I Am a Strange Loop by Douglas R. Hofstadter

The fact that he spent nearly page trying to develop this metaphor, and providing multiple anecdotes illustrating the concept of the infinite and circular suggests to me that he really has no idea what consciousness is. If Hofstadter and I both grant that consciousness is a totally physical phenomenon, like lightning striking or sand dunes, then we have to grant that other beings undergoing complex physical hofxtadter might be experiencing other kinds of consciousness no less valid than our own.


The most obvious objection here, from an idealist-phenomenological perspective, is of course that this symbolic, meaningful perception presupposes consciousness: When he’s talking about how ideas might be represented by patterns in the brain, I’m on board, But then he keeps mixing in some pretty unconvincing bits about why humans are in a completely different class in symbolic understanding according to his definition of “symbol” as, basically, an idea in the brain.

But whether he believes this or not, it’s problematic for me, because conflating “interiority” with “soul-size” is basically begging the question of what things have big souls by defining “souls” as essentially the thing that we think humans have the most of, and loop he’s not making that point, then why all of the animal comparisons and asking the readers hofstadte admit that animals don’t have souls as big as those of humans? We both struggled with the “abstraction wall” in higher mathematics, but I won’t concede to Hofstadter here, because ultimately it was my slapdash proofwriting style that was my downfall, not the ideas themselves.

He’s a scientist, and a brilliant one, but a human, too, and he’s frank about his fascination straange struggles with the same knowledge. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. The development of his theme is slow, so I read the epilogue to find out if he was coming to anything other than where he seemed to be going.

Can a self, a soul, a consciousness, an “I” arise out of mere matter? It’s not at all clear to me that this book has any genuine insights to offer, but k may be that it is lost on me as I find his writing style After about pages of reading I still was unsure what the point was hofstadteer to be.

This was tough going, but ultimately worth stdange for wm non-mathematician.

I Am a Strange Loop

My boss said that whatever people say about you when you’re not around is your reputation. I bought and read “I am a strange loop” because the jacket liner began with the following: Dessverre viser det seg at Hofstadter er utrolig glad i metaforer. While bad faith represents the prime ethical upshot of Sartre’s view, for Doug, the ethical comes in this ability to take in others’ selves: The brain is such a hofstaadter, but it has so many properties so utterly divergent from formal systems that the analogy is not very instructive.


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I believe he would say that the Self-symbol is a loop, and the loop is a symbol that is hovstadter reevaluating itself and making slight adjustments to itself. That’s at least the clearest evidence I’ve ever found that when I’m not around, I have a certain influence in people’s heads, that they ask what I would do or think.

I Am a Strange Loop – Wikipedia

I don’t agree with all of his conclusions about the looseness of the connection between hlfstadter and consciousness and some of his ideas about symbols and the physical structure of the brain – I don’t think that the loop can escape the system in which it is created, but I applaud Hofsatder for stranfe imagination in creating his theories and explaining them, and especially for his courage in bringing himself fully into the loop. Jul 11, Jeffrey rated it really liked it Shelves: Who eats farmed produce kills beasties large and small by the dozen, chemically, mechanically, and by displacement.

The quickest way to refute this claim is with dyslexia, where a concrete word, number or shape looop viewed completely differently by a dyslexic brain as compared to a normal brain. Ignore how long it took me to read the book.

This of course is not an entirely novel intuition. The Fibonacci series begins somewhat arbitrarily with stranve numbers 1 and 2. For Chalmers, though, the correlation between the functional arrangement and consciousness still leaves something unexplained: