SOMA, the new sci-fi horror game by the creators of Amnesia, the Dark Descent, came out this week. It was influenced by the works of Greg Egan, China Mieville, Philip K Dick, and (MeFi's own) Peter Watts. [more inside]
Since 1993, the Institut Jean Nicod has awarded the annual Jean Nicod Prize to a leading philosopher or cognitive scientist for his or her work in the interdisciplinary study of the mind. The recipient is expected to deliver a series of lectures. The lecture series of this past year's winner, philosopher Stephen Stich, is entitled "Moral Theory Meets Cognitive Science: How Cognitive Science Can Transform Traditional Debates", and is now available online in video form. Also available is the lecture series of the previous year's winner, evolutionary anthropologist Michael Tomasello: "Origins of Human Communication". [more inside]
Online videos of philosophical lectures. Chomsky, Pinker, Dennet, Hofstadter, Searle, the Churchlands...
Test your knowledge of philosophy with the 2006 IAP Philosophy Trivia Quiz! This quiz is extremely hard, so you might want to take a break at the Cognitive Science Cafe [pdf].
Copycat [Java] - long available only in its rickety original LISP source - is now an interactive applet. You can propose analogy puzzles based on strings of letters and watch Copycat build up and tear down models of the problem until it finds a solution it's happy with. It will explain its reasoning, and, since stochastic elements are inolved, can come up with alternate solutions upon rerun. Tutorial for the applet here; or, explore MetaCat, the next generation follow-up.
Bongard problems are a benchmark of sorts for visual pattern recognition; they're also just fun puzzles, and this guy has got the definitive collection.
The Conceptual Metaphor Home Page at Berkeley offers a fascinating compilation of the metaphors underlying our everyday speech, such as Fear is Cold, Facts Are Points, Money is a Liquid, and Sexuality is an Offensive Weapon.