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SILENZI, María Inés. The frame problem and the debate on human rationality in cognitive psychology: Standard rationality vs. Ecological rationality. Interdisciplinaria [online]. 2018, vol.35, n.2, pp.445-457. ISSN 1668-7027.

The frame problem (McCarthy & Hayes, 1969) arose within the field of Artificial Intelligence research, more precisely within the calculation of situations, as the problem about how to represent, in the most succinct way possible, the fact that in a particular situation most properties of objects remain the same or are not disturbed by the performance of a particular action. Despite its logical origin, it did not take long for this problem to be addressed by several philosophers becoming the subject of major discussions that still surround the frame problem. One of the key difficulties that this problem tries to solve is the so-called difficulty of the vastness of the information: it would seem impossible to analyze each of the pieces of information from a vast set of information and evaluate, in each case, if it is or not relevant to carry out the taskin question. Of course, exploring a vast amount of information with very limited cognitive and temporal resources is one of the main computational limitations that the frame problem must overcome. Currently, the resolution of the frame problem has awakened a renewed interest in recent years, and its resolution has been taken up again. Proof of this is Fodor's (2000) treatment of the frame problem by criticizing some current strategies for its solution, such as the use of heuristics. The use of heuristics as strategies to explain cognitive processes is a subject of great relevance at present and especially of great interest in the area of psychology. Generally, the heuristics understood, prima facie, as practical rules that, with little information, offer reasonable solutions to problems or questions would solve the computational limitations of the frame problem by providing the computational processing sought. It must be considered that, as the difficulty of the vastness of information reflects, the determination of relevance is not computationally easy since it is necessary to evaluate large amounts of information and that is why the use of heuristics would appear as the main candidate to limit the computational load in the determination of relevance. The problem is that there are two research programs that work on heuristics: the Heuristics and Biases program and the Heuristics Fast and Frugal program. In literature of the area, the rivalry between these programs with respect to the methodology and way of working is often high-lighted, but also in terms of the scope and limits of the rationality that each of these programs postulates. More particularly, both programs have faced a great debate about human rationality, postulating different conceptions of rationality. Taking into account that it has been proposed to interpret the frame problem as a problem of rationality, the general objective of this paper is to investigate how the frame problem relates to such a debate on rationality; more specifically, it will be questioned which of these conceptions of rationality would be better articulated with the fundamental phenomenon of the frame problem. First, in this work we will analyze, the standard conception of rationality, considering some o the main criticisms that it has faced. These objections will allow us to introduce later the ecological conception of rationality postulated by the program of Fast and Frugal Heuristics. Finally, it will be evaluated which of these two concepts would be more linked to the fundamental phenomenon of the frame problem, in order to finally present the conclusions. We argue that the fundamental phenomenon of the frame problem is better articulated to an optimistic view of human rationality and it would be closer to the concept of ecological rationality proposed by the Heuristic Fast and Frugal program.

Palabras clave : Frame Problem; Heuristics; Rationality; Ecological Rationality; Standard Rationality.

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