In this book, numerous concepts formerly restricted to mankind or animals —such as intelligence, attachment, sexuality—are now discussed in relation to the machine.
From animal comes man, and from man, the machine. Among these three, boundaries are perpetually moving. Georges Chapouthier, a neurobiologist and philosopher, and Frédéric Kaplan, an expert in artificial intelligence, use the latest research in their fields to examine these boundaries and to determine the specificity of the human being.
Man, Animal, and Machine is organized around a series of probing questions, starting with the aptitudes of animals and machines. It covers a full spectrum of issues that are often pondered by scientists, philosophers, and the rest of us. Do animals possess consciousness? Are they truly intelligent? What about machines? Can they have a brain?
The book details the key concepts man has used to compare himself to animals and machines. These include the ability to learn and feel pain, and the capacity to create a moral code. The authors also consider what binds us—and animals and machines—together and to each other: affection, sexuality, and our inner rights. Even the characteristics that seem particular to humans alone—laughter, creativity, the soul, and the perception of time—can be found in animals, and may soon be detected in machines.
Presenting the latest research on artificial intelligence and animal studies from around the world, this book is a complete and authoritative analysis of our place among the animated beings and things that surround us.