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Agents as Intentional Systems

  • When explaining human activity, it is often useful to make statements such as the following:
    • Janine took her umbrella because she believed it was going to rain.
    • Michael worked hard because he wanted to possess a PhD.
  • These statements make use of a folk psychology, by which human behavior is predicted and explained through the attribution of attitudes, such as believing and wanting (as in the above examples), hoping, fearing, and so on.
  • The attitudes employed in such folk psychological descriptions are called the intentional notions.

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