State of Consciousness

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A State of Consciousness is a wakeful state where the conscious agent has a conscious experience.




    • Consciousness is the quality or state of being aware of an external object or something within oneself.[1][2] It has been defined as: subjectivity, awareness, sentience, the ability to experience or to feel, wakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind.[3] Despite the difficulty in definition, many philosophers believe that there is a broadly shared underlying intuition about what consciousness is.[4] As Max Velmans and Susan Schneider wrote in The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness: "Anything that we are aware of at a given moment forms part of our consciousness, making conscious experience at once the most familiar and most mysterious aspect of our lives."[5]

      Philosophers since the time of Descartes and Locke have struggled to comprehend the nature of consciousness and pin down its essential properties. Issues of concern in the philosophy of consciousness include whether the concept is fundamentally valid; whether consciousness can ever be explained mechanistically; whether non-human consciousness exists and if so how it can be recognized; how consciousness relates to language; whether consciousness can be understood in a way that does not require a dualistic distinction between mental and physical states or properties; and whether it may ever be possible for computers or robots to be conscious.

      In recent years, consciousness has become a significant topic of research in psychology and neuroscience. The primary focus is on understanding what it means biologically and psychologically for information to be present in consciousness — that is, on determining the neural and psychological correlates of consciousness. The majority of experimental studies assess consciousness by asking human subjects for a verbal report of their experiences (e.g., "tell me if you notice anything when I do this"). Issues of interest include phenomena such as subliminal perception, blindsight, denial of impairment, and altered states of consciousness produced by psychoactive drugs or spiritual or meditative techniques.

      In medicine, consciousness is assessed by observing a patient's arousal and responsiveness, and can be seen as a continuum of states ranging from full alertness and comprehension, through disorientation, delirium, loss of meaningful communication, and finally loss of movement in response to painful stimuli.[6] Issues of practical concern include how the presence of consciousness can be assessed in severely ill, comatose, or anesthetized people, and how to treat conditions in which consciousness is impaired or disrupted.[7]

  1. "consciousness". Merriam-Webster. Retrieved June 4, 2012. 
  2. Robert van Gulick (2004). "Consciousness". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 
  3. Farthing G (1992). The Psychology of Consciousness. Prentice Hall. ISBN 978-0-13-728668-3. 
  4. John Searle (2005). "Consciousness". In Honderich T. The Oxford companion to philosophy. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-926479-7. 
  5. Susan Schneider and Max Velmans (2008). "Introduction". In Max Velmans, Susan Schneider. The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Wiley. ISBN 978-0-470-75145-9. 
  6. Güven Güzeldere (1997). Ned Block, Owen Flanagan, Güven Güzeldere. ed. The Nature of Consciousness: Philosophical debates. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. pp. 1–67. 
  7. J. J. Fins, N. D. Schiff, and K. M. Foley (2007). "Late recovery from the minimally conscious state: ethical and policy implications". Neurology 68 (4): 304–307. doi:10.1212/01.wnl.0000252376.43779.96. PMID 17242341. 


  • (Tonomi, 2012) ⇒ Giulio Tononi. (2012). “Consciousness and Information Theory." Tutorial at NIPS 2012 (NIPS 2012).
    • QUOTE: ... discovering the neuronal correlates of consciousness leaves the question of the exact relationship between excitable (brain) matter and consciousness open.



  • (Freund, 2006) ⇒ Yoav Freund. (2006). “My Interpretation of Nietzsche." Personal Note
    • What is "consciousness"? It is just a word that we assign to the type of thought processes that we think are unique to us and are not possessed by less developed creatures (not to mention computers). ... While this piece was written well before Turing and the notion of AI, I think it carries an important message for AI. That is: don't concern yourselves too much with consciousness, it is not that important. Better work on getting knowledge and making it instinctive, i.e. automatic and reactive, i.e. computer code, rather than putting it into a "universal" framework that will solve, with one fell swoop, optical character recognition (OCR), speech recognition, planning, game playing, and the creation of original music.