Donnerstag, 26. Januar 2017

Human consciousness as a powerful tool for low-cost scenario testing:

I like the idea of Richard D. Alexander that (human) consciousness could be perceived as a powerful tool for low-cost scenario testing. For example, compared to writing in ones primary language, it usually takes more time to write in a foreign language. In particular, if one isn't truly habituated in talking that foreign language fluently. So, while constructing sentences in ones primary language is highly automatized, the construction of sentences in a secondary language can be interpreted much more easily as scenario building and scenario testing. Each sentence which we construct in that foreign language can be understood as a scenario which gets evaluated after construction. Sometimes there is a 'feeling' that something is wrong with the constructed sentence. The term 'feeling' in this context states, that in certain cases we cannot state explicitly what is wrong with that sentence. In a nutshell, our brain tests and evaluates constructed sentences on the basis of accumulated experiences with the foreign language. These experiences are 'densely packed' stored somewhere within our brains and most of them cannot be easily unzipped (i.e. experiences leave tracks in our brains, but in most cases we are not able to reconstruct the experienced events consciously). If the sentence fails the test it will get discarded and another sentence will get constructed. These conscious construction and evaluation cycles are quite time consuming, nevertheless they probably contribute heavily to human intelligence and creativity.

[Richard D. Alexander on scenario building: a, b]

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