PHIL 201 Discussion 1

Liberty PHIL 201 Discussion 1 Answers

Topic: Androids and the Mind/Body Problem

Note: In order to fulfill this assignment, you need to have read the Group Discussion Board Forum 1 Instructions, the Star Trek synopsis and/or episode found in the Reading & Study folder, and Hasker: ch. 3. If you have not done so, please stop now and read that material.

For your thread: After reading the synopsis (or viewing the episode), write a substantive response (at least 350 words) and post it in the forum. Your thread must address the first question below. You may also address several of the other questions, but the bulk of your response should be on the first question and relating the story to Hasker, ch. 3. Any quotes from sources must be cited and will not count towards your word count.

  1. From your reading of Hasker, and using the categories he uses, what view of the mind/body problem do you think is exhibited by Picard? By Maddox? Support your answer.
  2. Maddox lists 3 criteria for a being to be sentient: intelligence, self-awareness, and consciousness. Are these adequate? Can you think of other properties or characteristics a being needs to have in order to be considered a “person?” What might they be?
  3. Do you think that artificial intelligence to the level as it is presented in the story will someday be possible? Why or why not?
  4. Do you think Maddox is right when he claims that Picard is being “irrational and emotional” in his view of data?
  5. Do you agree with the JAG officers’ final ruling? Why or why not?
  6. If A.I. does become possible, will we have obligations to treat machines “ethically?”
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