Abstract for AISB 2000: How to Design a Functioning Mind

Abstract for the
Symposium on How to Design a Functioning Mind
17-18th April 2000
At the AISB'00 Convention

AUTHOR: Dr. Darryl N. Davis,
        Department of Computer Science,
        The University of Hull,

TITLE: Minds have personalities - Emotion is the core

There are many models of mind, and many different exemplars of
agent architectures. Some models of mind map onto computational
designs and some agent architectures are capable of supporting
different models of mind. Many agent architectures are
competency-based designs related to tasks in specific domains
(e.g. COG). The more general frameworks (e.g. ACT-R, AIS, SOAR)
map across tasks and domains. A number of models for synthetic
minds are based on analyses and observations of human minds.
These types of agent architectures are capable of performing
certain behaviour and cognitive competencies associated with a
functioning mind. There is a problem with many of these
approaches when they are applied to the design of a mind
analogous in type to the human mind - there is no core to mind in
any of these theories or designs other than an information
processing architecture. As any specific architecture is applied
to different domains, the information processing content
(knowledge and behaviors) of the architecture changes wholesale.
From the perspective of developing intelligent computational
systems this is more than acceptable. From the perspective of
developing functioning (human-like) minds this is problematic -
these models are in effect emotionally autistic.

If mind is an ongoing characteristic of an entity of a certain
level of complexity and a mind is capable of moving through many
different control states, from where do the control patterns that
stabilize a mind as an ongoing (developing) personality emanate?
Our current work on this theme presents an emotion-based core for
mind. This work draws on evidence from neuroscience, philosophy
and psychology. As an agent monitors its interactions within
itself and relates these to tasks in its external environment,
the impetus for change within itself (i.e. a need to learn) is
manifested as an unwanted combination of emotions. Such a control
state can lead to the generation of internal processes requiring
the agent to modify its behavior or processes in some way. The
modification of an agent's internal environment is then described
in terms of an emotion motivated mapping between its internal and
external environments. Cognition and underlying processes are
used to navigate the agent-oriented internal environment of
emotion. It is suggested that personality traits are a
manifestation of this emotion core. Personality becomes an
emergent property of the cognitive architecture and its
(pre-)disposition to concentrate on certain tasks and favour
specific instances of control states. Personality traits affect
and influence the different categories of cognitive and animated
behavior. Moods arise from the interaction of current
temporally-global niche roles (the favouring of certain aspects
of emotion space) and temporally-local drives that reflect the
current focus of the deliberative processing as perceived by the
reflective layer. Temporally-global drives are those associated
with the agent's overall purpose related to its current, possible
and desired niche spaces. Temporally-local drives are related to
ephemeral states or events within the agent's environment or
itself. The (high-level) niche-seeking drives (or dispositions)
together with the more orthodox control states bind the
theoretical model together and allow a synthetic agent to become
complete and exhibit a (non-shallow) personality.


Darryl Davis is a Lecturer in the Department of Computer Science,
researching and teaching in AI related areas. Research interests
are diverse but include  Cognitive Science and Artificial Intelligence.
Current active research areas include:
    Agents and Artificial Life Architectures.
    Agents in Electronic Commerce.
    Knowledge Engineering.
    Machine Learning and Data Mining.

Publications over the last two years include:
 D.N. Davis, Designing an A-Life Agent for the Modeling of Emotion,
    The Fourth International Conference on Autonomous Agents,
    Barcelona, June 2000 (Under Review).
 D.N. Davis, Agent-Based Decision Support Framework
  For Water Supply Infrastructure Rehabiliation
    International Journal of Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 1999
    (In press)
 Davis, D.N., Chalbi, T. and Berbank-Green, B.
    Towards An Architecture for A-life Agents:II,
    New Frontiers in Computational Intelligence and Its Applications,
    ISO Press, 1999.
 Davis, D.N. Computational Emergence and Computational Emotion,
        Proceedings of IEEE Symposium on Systems, Man and Cybernetics,
    Tokyo, October 1999.
 Davis, D.N., Linyang, S. and Sharp, B.
    Neural Network Approaches to X-ray Image Segmentation, CSCS12,
    The 12th International Conference On Control Systems And Computer
    Science,   Romania, 1999.
 Davis, D.N. and Sharp, B.
    An Agent Framework for Decision Support in the Water Industry,
    New Review of Applied Expert Systems, Volume 5. 1999.
 Sharp, B. and Davis, D.N.
    An Agent Framework for Decision Support in the Water Industry,
    International Conference on AI Applied to Soft Computing,
    Honolulu. 1999.
 Davis, D.N.and Berbank-Green, B. Towards An Architecture for A-life
    Agents, International Conference on Computational Intelligence for
    Modelling, Control and Automation, Vienna, February, 1999.
 Linyang, S., Davis, D.N. and Sharp, B.
    The Application of Neural Networks to X-ray Image Segmentation,
    First International Conference on Enterprise Information Systems,
    ICEIS, Portugal, 1999.
 Davis, D.N. Synthetic Agents: Synthetic Minds? Frontiers in Cognitive Agents,
    Proceeedings of IEEE Symposium on Systems, Man and Cybernetics,
    San Diego, October 1998.
 Sharp, B., Davis, D.N., Edwards, R., Dean, A. & Bancroft, G.
    A Knowledge Base Environment to Support Water Mains Rehabilitation
    Decision Making, Engineering Asset Management, ERA Report 98-0778,
    ERA Technology, London, October 1998.