Research

Faculty Research

Research by faculty affiliated with the laboratory concerns philosophical and foundational issues that arise in cognitive science. For example, research by Lab Coordinator Pete Mandik concerns philosophical theories of mental representation and tackles these issues through computer simulations of evolving populations of virtual autonomous agents. For further information on this and related lines of research, visit the web page for The Philosophical Animat Research Group. Mandik also works in the growing fields of Neurophilosophy and the Philosophy of Neuroscience, concentrating on philosophical questions concerning the neurophysiological bases of consciousness, representational content, and their relation. See the "Publications" link to learn more about research completed to date. See also the "People" link to find out more about affiliated faculty and their research interests.

Grants

In 2000, Prof. Pete Mandik received a grant from the McDonnell Project in Philosophy and the Neurosciences for his project Objective and Subjective Neural Representation.

Student Research

Students have ample opportunities to conduct cognitive scientific research using the laboratories equipment and facilities. Students pursue both their own research projects and assist faculty research. One focus of student participation is through The Cognitive Science Student Research Group, an extracurricular group for students interested in all and any aspects of cognitive science. Additional student research involves curricular integration with lab activities and several Cognitive Science related classes. For more information, see Course Related Activities.

Laboratory Equipment and Resources

  • Robot Construction Kits
    • Lego Mindstorms (Robotics Invention System kits and Vision Command Module For robotic sight)
    • Solorbotics Photovore (solar powered light eating robot)
    • Stiquito Hexapod with Nickle-Titanium "Memory Alloy" actuators
  • PC and Macintosh Computers
  • Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Life Software
    • Framsticks (See our page describing our work with Framsticks)
  • Walk-in Sensory Depravation Chamber
  • Physiological Monitoring and Stimulus Display BIOPAC analog-to-digital converters, with sensors for the following physiological parameters: EEG, EVR, EOG, ECG, SCL, SCR, among others...
  • Touch-Screen computer monitor
  • Video cameras
  • Computer-interfaced "Dream Mask" sensory deprivation/light-stimulators with sleeping, cue and eye movement adjustment modes