Victor: Suppose human beings build a robot that is capable of responding to verbal commands and building internal representations of its environment through cameras and by moving around and manipulating its environment.You would say that its internal representations of objects in its environment have only derived intentionality which comes from human intentionality. Now suppose all human beings cease to exist, while the robot continues to function. The robot is then discovered by some other intelligent alien species with original intentionality. That species learns how the robot works, and infers that it has internal representations which correspond to objects in its environment. What would you say about those internal representations during the time when there are no humans and before the aliens discover it? If the derived intentionality is only from the human intentionality, would you say that there is no representation going on anymore? Or does the derived intentionality survive the extinction of humans?Likewise, what would you say about the representations after the aliens discover it?Do they cause representation to begin anew?On my view, it doesn't matter how the causal structures which cause covariance of the internal structures of the robot in correspondence with objects in its environment originate, that is all there is to representation, and the robot has representations which refer regardless of who else exists. How would you describe these situations?-- Jim Lippard
Jim: My concept of original intentionality requires that it be the intentionality of some conscious thinking subject to whom the objects are represented. We can attribute an as-if intentionality to systems where there is this kind of covariation between inner states and objects in the world, but unless is it recognized by the thinking subject, it is merely as-if intentionality and nor original intentionality.