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Neural Netw. 2008 Mar-Apr;21(2-3):311-21. doi: 10.1016/j.neunet.2007.12.010. Epub 2008 Jan 22.

Some neural networks compute, others don't.

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  • 1Department of Philosophy, University of Missouri-St. Louis, St. Louis, MO 63121-4400, USA.

Erratum in

  • Neural Netw. 2008 May;21(4):698.


I address whether neural networks perform computations in the sense of computability theory and computer science. I explicate and defend the following theses. (1) Many neural networks compute--they perform computations. (2) Some neural networks compute in a classical way. Ordinary digital computers, which are very large networks of logic gates, belong in this class of neural networks. (3) Other neural networks compute in a non-classical way. (4) Yet other neural networks do not perform computations. Brains may well fall into this last class.

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