Technical Program: Event Detail

Friday, October 1, 12:00 - 16:00 EDT (UTC -4)
What makes representations "useful"?
Ben Baker, Richard Lange, Alessandro Achille, Rosa Cao, Nikolaus Kriegeskorte, Odelia Schwartz, Xaq Pitkow

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Scientific question: Internal representations play a central role in the study of both biological and artificial intelligence, as well as in philosophy of mind, but what precisely defines a representation is challenging to pin down. Across disciplines, one common thread is that representations are typically “useful” in some sense. Centering around this concept of usefulness, we propose a cross-disciplinary GAC to share ideas and develop more precise answers to the following questions:

  1. What makes representations “useful,” both in terms of their content and their form?
  2. How does the use or downstream causal effect of a representation contribute to its meaning?

We will simplify the scope by primarily discussing these questions in the context of visual perception.