New York Times: Monkey Can Think. Well, They Can Move An Artifical Arm.



The New York Times ran a front page article this morning with the title, “Monkeys Think, Move Artifical Arm as Own.” and my first thought was how are we defining “think?”  For example, there are certain bees that engage in very organized flight patterns that convey, “danger”, “food”, etc. to other bees, but the academic community hasn’t come out and declared that bees have language!  The same holds true for the monkeys in the experiment cited in the New York Times; that is, while the primate has willed the artificial arm to move, we can’t logically conclude that the monkey can now ponder whether God exists or if chicken would make for a nice dinner.  “Think” is a very strong word and the New York Times should have thought longer about the usage in a headline on the front page.

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