Faculty of Mathematics, Physics
and Informatics
Comenius University in Bratislava

Seminar of Cognitive Science - Martin V. Butz (2.10.2018)

Tuesday 2.10.2018 at 16:30, Lecture room I/9

26. 09. 2018 12.18 hod.
By: Igor Farkaš

prof. Dr. Martin V. Butz (University of Tübingen, Germany):
An Integrative, Event-Predictive Theory of Cognition

Various disciplines suggest that our brain functions predominantly in a generative, predictive manner. Neural encodings develop and neural activities unfold in an anticipatory fashion for the purpose of generating homeostasis-oriented, flexible, adaptive behavioral control. Thereby, behavior includes not only bodily motions but also the control of attention, social interactions, communication, versatile planning, and reasoning. Critical to master such higher-level cognitive abilities and thus to enable the imagination of past, future, and hypothetical scenes and events is the development of generalized and abstract encodings. In accordance, I will sketch-out an integrative, event-predictive theory of cognition. I will show results from behavioral psychological experiments, which highlight that our mind indeed focusses on minimizing event-predictive uncertainty while acting in a goal-directed manner. Moreover, I will give a short overview over our computational models, which learn hierarchical, event-predictive encodings from sensorimotor experiences for the purpose of optimizing flexible and highly adaptive, interactive goal-directed behavior.

Prof. D. Martin V. Butz got his PhD in computer science from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and since 2011 he is a full professor of computer science and coopted full professor in psychology at University of Tübingen, where he leads Cognitive Modeling lab. He is an author and editor of several books and almost three hundred publications. Recently he published a book How The Mind Comes Into Being: Introducing Cognitive Science from a Functional and Computational Perspective (Oxford University Press, 2017).

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