Progress & Refs for SMT

Here is a historical overview of developments of the sensorimotor theory from its very beginnings in 1996, with indication of some of the critical ideas and associated papers. The links to the cited papers as well as others can be found in the bibliography in the second part of the page.

O’Regan (1996): Solving the “real mysteries” of visual perception

  • “the world as an outside memory” 
  • against internal representations
  • role of action in perception (MacKay’s “sensorimotor contingencies”)

O’Regan & Noë (2001), BBS: Sensorimotor theory of vision and visual consciousness

  • exercising mastery of sensorimotor contingencies; sensation vs perception
  • awareness (cognitive access) 
  • vividness (presence) through grabbiness (alerting capacity)
  • purports to bridge the explanatory gap

Noë’s work

  • action, environment, biology: Action in Perception (Noë, 2004) 
  • “grand illusion”: Noë & O’Regan (2000)
  • role of the brain: Hurley & Noë (2003); Out of Our Heads (Noë, 2009)

My first philosophical refinements 

  • bodiliness (corporality), grabbiness (alerting capacity), insubordinateness, phenomenality plot, analytic phenomenology: (O’Regan, Myin, Noë, 2004; 2005)
  • what people say about qualia: O’Regan (2010)
  • robot consciousness: O’Regan (2007; 2010; 2012)
  • smell: Cooke & Myin (2011)

More refinements: O’Regan (2011): “Why red doesn’t sound like a bell” —  Phenomenal Consciousness (“Feel”)

  • consciousness in general — purports to solve hard problem
  • two levels of “cognitive access” 
  • “self” 

O’Regan 2013-2019: ERC “FEEL”

  • explanatory status, radical enactivism, continuum of cognitive access: O’Regan (2014) 
  • absolute and relative explanatory gap; mental manipulation; access through self: O’Regan (2016)
  • synesthesia: O’Regan & Degenaar (2014); Silverman (2018 JCS)
  • sensorimotor, autopoietic, radical enactivism: Degenaar & O’Regan (2017); Villalobos & Silverman (2018); 
  • enactivism & imagery: Foglia & O’Regan (2014)
  • predictive processing: O’Regan & Degenaar (2014)
  • psychopathology: Myin, O’Regan & Myin-Germeys (2015)
  • representations, content, explanatory gap, hard problem: Silverman (2016 PQ; CF; 2017 JCS; 2017 PCS)

 Empirical applications of SMT

  • space (cf refs by Philipona; Laflaquière; Terekhov)
  • neural nets, camera calibration (cf refs by Terekhov; Montone)
  • color (cf refs by Philipona; Witzel; Vasquez-Coral; Flachot) 
  • Rubber hand illusion, pain (Valenzuela-Moguillansky)
  • sensory substitution (cf refs by Witzel; Schumann; Rizza)
  • babies (cf refs by Fagard, Rat-Fischer, Somogyi, Esseily, Jacquey, Popescu)