The Knowledge-Representation Hypothesis

Last Update: 12 January 2005

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(From Smith, Brian Cantwell (1982), "Prologue to "Reflection and Semantics in a Procedural Language" (PhD Dissertation, Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, MIT, Feb., 1982)," in Ronald J. Brachman & Hector J. Levesque (eds.) (1985), Readings in Knowledge Representation (Los Altos, CA: Morgan Kaufmann): 31-39.)

Version 1 (p. 33):

part 1:

"Any process capable of reasoning intelligently about the world must consist in part of a field of structures, of a roughly linguistic sort, which in some fashion represent whatever knowledge and beliefs the process may be said to possess."

part 2:

"There is ... an internal process that ... "computes with" these representations."

part 3:

"This ... process ... react[s] only to the "form" or "shape" of these mental representations without regard to what they mean or represent."

Version 2 (p. 33):

"Any mechanically embodied intelligent process will be comprised of structural ingredients that a) we as external observers naturally take to represent a propositional account of the knowledge that the overall process exhibits and b) independent of such external semantical attribution, play a formal but causal and essential role in engendering the behavior that manifests that knowledge."

William J. Rapaport (
file: 563S05/KR.hypoth-2005-01-12.html