April 23, 2020


I Am a Strange Loop [Douglas R. Hofstadter] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. One of our greatest philosophers and scientists of the mind. Editorial Reviews. Review. Amazon Best Books of the Month, March : I Am a Strange Loop eBook: Douglas R. Hofstadter: Kindle Store. Scott O’Reilly loops the loop with Douglas Hofstadter.

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Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. Hofstadter elaborates on the metaphysical revelations of Godel, Escher, Bach, which I soaked up with great interest many years ago.

I Am a Strange Loop – Wikipedia

However, because they have the ability to persistently represent external events, and to manipulate those “symbols” in such a way that ideas can accrete to other ideas, where a high-level concept like “sitcom” might include “television” which includes “screen” which includes “image”, etc, it reaches a threshold where the system is able to conceive of itself in symbolic terms, even though at the symbolic level of thought, there one doesn’t observe the individual neurons that physically cause that phnomenon.

His consciousness will end and some other person identical to him in every way will be reborn, but his point-of-view of the world will be snuffed out. Basic Books; Reprint edition July 8, Language: I jus really hope at this point that the author doesn’t attempt a proof of free will. My beef with Hofstadter is that his research does not seem focused on testing what seems to be the crux axiom of his theory. Might we not lead ourselves into error by assuming that human consciousness lop the highest attainment yet along a one-dimensional scale running from ‘no soul’ to ‘maximum soul?

Not easy stuff, he makes amm one model of it possible. For a mathfreak like you, sure. The essence of human consciousness is the ability to negate, to say no, to conceive alternatives l’etre et le neant. But then again, he is a parochial computer scientist.

The book is written as douglqs he is more worried about getting the reader to like him than he is about clarity in the presentation and defense of his thesis which, I must assert again, is a marvelous thesis, indeed. The author draws analogies between Godel’s incompleteness theorem of mathematical logic and the question of the meaning of identity and consciousness. Discover Prime Book Box for Kids. To understand this, Hofstadter asks us to consider two very different levels at which we might view the Mona Lisa:.


Mind arises from what goes on physically in the brain and nothing more. Fascinating to hear about Hofstadter going through the loss of his wife. I Am a Strange Loop argues that the key to understanding hofstdter and consciousness is the “strange loop”-a special kind of abstract feedback loop inhabiting our brains. But I wonder if Hofstadter, enthusiastic as he is over the idea of self-referencing systems, isn’t overstating his point.

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FARG models also have an overarching philosophy that Where are my qualia? So why did I start out to read another Hofstadter book? The first half of this book goes into some depth concerning Bertrand Russell’s and Whitehead’s Principia Mathematicaand then the work of Kurt Godel. The thing measured has no moral content at all – not people, not events, not inanimate objects.

See and discover other items: Hofstadter begins with Godel because as it will turn out, his insight into the dokglas descriptiveness of number theory from which self-reference was supposedly banned by Bertran Russel, becomes his inroad into a philosophy of mind. An Eternal Golden Braid and more focused on the “scientific” side of things without all the wonderful digressions you have to read GEB to understand.

I Am a Strange Loop argues that the key to understanding selves and consciousness is the “strange loop”–a special kind duglas abstract feedback loop inhabiting our brains. We can live in others, just as others can live in us.

But these senses of the word “soul” are not equivalent. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it. The “I” concept is just something that seems to be uniquely developed in vouglas animals, so it’s a convenient standard to take up as a measure of worth, because we as humans are sure to come out on top. This is more than a follow-up.

Ships from and sold by Amazon. Rather, he develops a psychology that illustrates and supports his fundamental view of human reality.

In other words, consciousness and physical necessity, as characterized by Hofstadter, do not seem to be conceptually compatible; it does not seem possible to for him to have his cake and eat it too. Not the brilliance I was looking forward to. Yet who — or what — is doing this storytelling?

I Am a Strange Loop

How can a mysterious abstraction be real-or is our “I” merely a convenient fiction? That’s why the arguments are so murky–because they don’t quite connect. This book is in fact an entire logicia I have an hofstadteer perspective on this title because the book I read just before it was The New Earth by Eckhart Tolle, a book grounded in Zen Buddhist philosophy.


This isn’t a bad book, apart from the constant use of reference to the “dear reader”, it’s just redundant because of This is merely a re-hash of Hofstadter’s justly famous Godel, Escher, Bach: He was initially appointed to the Indiana University’s Computer Science Department faculty inand at that time he launched his research program in computer modeling of mental processes which at that time he called “artificial intelligence research”, a label that he has since dropped in favor of “cognitive science research”.

I Am a Strange Loop by Douglas R. Hofstadter

A mathematician friend recommended the book to me, and I tried mightily to read it, keeping douglaz it more because of my admiration for my friend that for the experience of reading the book.

By continuing to browse the site with cookies enabled in your browser, you consent to the use of cookies in accordance with our privacy policy. The quickest way to refute this claim is with dyslexia, where a concrete word, number or shape is viewed completely differently by a dyslexic brain as compared to a normal brain.

I have long been interested in the nature and origin or human consciousness and sense of self, and as an irreligious materialist, the traditional explanations offered by our dominant social institutions were unsatisfactory.

The story of a man who jumps into what is basically a Star Trek teleporter and is then reintegrated on another planet with every memory, thought, inclination, etc. While Tolle occasionally does fall into new-age batshit, overall his analysis was fairly compelling to me.

Perhaps the thing I learned most from this book is that consciousness can perhaps only be understood by analogy, not by a direct understanding of the physiology or via mechanical terms.

Hofstadter is a respected academic, and I’m a dingus with a Goodreads account.