Brain as Prediction Machine

Julie Dirksen, Usable Learning, Sept 14, 2017
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I ran across this concept last summer and let it slip by, but I don't want to overlook it. The idea is that the brain functions not as an intelligence or thinking instrument, but as a prediction machine. This article collects a number of resources that revolve around that idea.  This is important because the function of predicing can be very different, and the requirements much lower, than for intelligence or cognition. That said, I think Julie Dirksen minsinterprets the idea in her post, and in particular, every word in the sentence "our brains use embodied simulation to construct meaning" is wrong in its own distinct way (I should write an article on just this sentence one day). You don't need any of that cognitive overhead to make predictions. In all fairness though, she's summarizing a TED talk from Anil Seth, which is the source of some of the error. That sat, the post is worth a look, and the concept definitely worth a think.

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