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The Pragmatic TurnToward Action-Oriented Views in Cognitive Science$
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Andreas K. Engel, Karl J. Friston, and Danica Kragic

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780262034326

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262034326.001.0001

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The Mindful Filter

The Mindful Filter

Free Energy and Action

Chapter:
(p.97) 6 The Mindful Filter
Source:
The Pragmatic Turn
Author(s):

Karl J. Friston

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262034326.003.0006

This chapter frames key questions about embodied cognition and action in terms of active inference; namely, the premise that the brain is trying to infer the causes of its sensory input—and samples that input to minimize uncertainty about its inferences. This provides a process theory for embodied exchanges with the world that can be cast as a Bayesian filter (or more simply predictive coding) equipped with classical reflexes. The ensuing (embodied inference) perspective raises interesting questions about embodiment and enactivism: Can we ever truly observe worldly states? Are there such things as representations? Can we make inferences about other agents who are making inferences about us? These questions are unpacked in terms of the unobservability assumption, sensorimotor contingency theory, and the active inference perspective on mirror neurons and inferring the intention of others.

Keywords:   Strüngmann Forum Reports, active inference, attention, Bayesian, embodied cognition, action, enactivism, predictive coding, sensory attenuation, theory of mind

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