Re: virus: Rationality

Tim Rhodes (
Mon, 24 Feb 1997 20:40:39 -0800 (PST)

On Mon, 24 Feb 1997, Dave Pape wrote:

> I'm trying to argue that the
> process of rationality is carried out by a non-rational computing device,
> whose outputs are selected by evolutionary pressures, or the pressures of
> reward and punishment, so that they APPEAR rational.


> Those animals, /those animals' nervous systems/, aren't rational. Their
> behaviour LOOKS rational, looks reasoned, looks as though it could have been
> logically decided on. But I don't think it is.

Although I risk starting the "definitions" game again I'd offer that:

"Rational" (see David McF. for the use of quotation marks) is the
term we give the behaviors that fit your model of "looking as though it
could have been logically decided on".

Oh, by the way, are you taking your prenatal vitamins like the doctor told
you to, Dave, honey? I worry so.

Prof. Tim