Knowledge, Understanding and Consciousness

Knowledge, Understanding and Consciousness
12 October 2009, St. Louis, MO, USA
Workshop on Machine Consciousness within the KIMAS’09 Conference

There is an increasing interest in investigating the possibility of equipping machines with consciousness mechanisms. The rationale behind it may be just a further attempt to mimic biological minds but can be also a search for better performing architectures for machines. Whatever the reason one of the main problem is the still evolving understanding of biological consciousness.

The scientific study of consciousness has already provided some plausible models of this elusive phenomena. In some cases the postulated models stress its evolutionary functional value. This has led to an increasing interest from engineering, represented in the emergent community of machine consciousness, in the implementation of this functionality in machines, so as to provide them with enhanced cognitive capabilities for improved performance. However, a deeper theoretical comprehensive theory is needed in order to properly transfer the biologically inspired architectures into robust, functional implementations.

This workshop will focus on the characterization of machine consciousness and the analysis of theoretical and implementational methods for realizing it. The title of the workshop “Knowledge, understanding and consciousness” proposes a particular perspective to approach the problem: consciousness as continuous understanding of information flows in a knowledge-based agent.

The following are some possible topics:

* Are there formal ways of discovering consciousness in a system? Formal methods for detecting/measuring consciousness.

* Can machine consciousness be studied without considering phenomenal states?

* What makes an information/content/process qualifiable as “conscious”?

* Which computational theories specifically advance the understanding of
consciousness?

* What is the role of knowledge and meaning in consciousness?

* Relations between understanding and phenomenology.

* Theoretical models and implementations of Machine Consciousness.

* Which theoretical and practical tools are more appropriate for the construction of conscious machines?

* Applications of machine consciousness in technical systems.

* Consciousness and meta-x (reasoning, management, representation).

See workshop webpage for detailed information:

http://www.aslab.org/events/KUC2009

  http://www.cs.siu.edu/~kimas/

Important dates

Full paper submission: June 15, 2009
Abstract submission: June 15, 2009
Hotel discount: September 21, 2009
Workshop: October 12, 2009

Workshop format

The workshop will be a full day event gathering researchers from machine consciousness and knowledge-based systems. The workshop format includes a plenary talk, a number of Invited Speakers, a public call for papers and a final panel discussion. Invited speakers and authors responding to the public call are invited to submit a two page abstract for presentation at the workshop. Alternatively, they may submit a full-length paper. Submitted abstracts and papers will be refereed and selected for half-hour oral presentations on the basis of quality and relevance to the issues the workshop is addressing. Accepted full-length papers will be included in the KIMAS Conference proceedings.

Plenary talk

Professor James Albus, Krasnow Institute for Advanced Studies

Invited speakers

We are inviting a range of speakers who will bring their specialized expertise to bear on the issues around machine consciousness.

Submission

Authors can submit either an abstract or a full paper, both will be considered for full length oral presentation. Full papers can have a maximum length length of 6 pages and abstracts of 2.

Submissions should be emailed to: carlos.hernandez(no-spam at)upm.es or ricardo.sanz(no-spam at)upm.es

using the IEEE proceedings template (both latex sources and PDF files must be included)

Accepted full papers will be included in the KIMAS Conference Proceedings published by IEEE.

Organizers

Ricardo Sanz, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid
Stan Franklin, University of Memphis
Carlos Hernandez, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid

Program Committee

Ricardo Sanz, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid
Stan Franklin, University of Memphis
Antonio Chella, Universita di Palermo
Riccardo Manzotti, IULM University
Owen Holland, University of Essex
Alexei Samsonovich, George Mason University

Venue

Marriot St. Louis Airport
10700 Pear Tree Lane
St. Louis, MO 63134
(314) 423-9700

Registration: general KIMAS 09 Conference registration

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