Computational Logic and Human Thinking

Tutorial at CADE 23
(23rd international conference on automated deduction)
Wroclaw, Poland
1 August 2011

Robert Kowalski
Imperial College London

In this tutorial, I make the case for a comprehensive, logic-based theory of human thinking, drawing upon and reconciling a number of otherwise competing paradigms in Artificial Intelligence and other fields. The most important of these paradigms are production systems, logic programming, classical logic and decision theory. The technical foundations of the theory are provided by abductive logic programming embedded in an observation-thought-decision-action agent cycle. The theory draws support, not only from Logic, Computing and Artificial Intelligence, but also from related developments in Cognitive Psychology, Philosophy, Law and Management Science.
I will argue that the connection graph proof procedure can be regarded as a logic-based connectionist model of the mind, which supports the combination of forward and backward reasoning in abductive logic programming. This kind of thinking in the mind of an intelligent agent embedded in the world can be pictured roughly like this:


The tutorial will be based on the book Computational Logic and Human Thinking: How to be Artificially Intelligent to be published by Cambridge University Press. Before it is published, a copy of the book will be available at