In this chapter we will attempt to build a theory of knowledge and wisdom. This is a first poke at the arrogance of AI research and the next chapter's topic, but more importantly we have to give an epistemology of knowledge.
This will be a fundamentally pragmatic aproach grounded in animal cognition and phenomenology. I want to point to a possible future theory that identifies how meaning emerges at the very base of the tree of life in the three category semiotics at the level of celular mechanism. This connects back through autopoetic theory to explain how functional/regulatory networks are reproduced through chemical information codes and signals in a self-regulated network of production and reproduction. Multi-cellular systems involve more layers of process that are produced and reproduced though more networks of signals. Internal signals like nerve impulses and hormone (enzyme) signals in the bloodstream or cell to cell. More three category signs and signals, including sensory signals via eyes, ears, skin, muscles, etc.
Our brains organize our experience and make it comprehensible. With humans, we need a lot of post-natal nurturing and experience for a mature human being with human phenomenology emerges. The first thing to notice is that all that post-natal training also represents a cultural inheritance. Presumably there is some ancient wisdom both in our traditions and natural wisdom inherited genetically.
This chapter also points to Simon's "The sciences of the artificial" to refer to anything that is, in some sense, "human designed" vs. from nature. Language itself is deeply a genetic inheritance that gives us the physical ability to produce and interpret speach sounds and to learn a grammar. Written language is possible, but not predicted directly by spoken language. What about the art of the cave? The story and of the fire/hearth? At some point a creative inventiveness emerges strongly in human culture.
The artificial is the sum total of this invention. We have a lot of knowledge, but can we produce collective wisdom? This is the challenge of our age. To go beyond intelligence and knowledge towards wisdom that is good for all. It is necessary to avoid the distopias of the singularity.