Definitions of Mindware


“(As a count noun): A product which affects or improves one’s mind (rare).

Material (especially books) which provides mental stimulation.

(Computing): Software which closely imitates or interacts with the human mind; an artificial intelligence or virtual reality program.

A person’s mind, especially intellectual faculties or thought processes, regarded as variously analogous to computer software. Hence in extended use: human intelligence or expertise, especially seen as a commodity.”

[ English Oxford Living Dictionary: ]


“A term invented by cognitive scientist David Perkins, [mindware] is defined as rules, procedures and other forms of knowledge that are stored in memory and can be retrieved in order to make decisions and solve problems (Stanovich, 2009)”. 

[Jamie Hale, “Identifying and Avoiding Contaminated Mindware”

[ K. Stanovich. What Intelligence Tests Miss: the Psychology of Rational Thought.
(New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2009) ]


“(As an uncountable noun): The mental knowledge and procedures that a person uses to solve problems or make decisions.”

[ ]


“One way to track the debate around this revolution [about conceptions of intelligence]  is to use a metaphor, the idea of mindware. What is mindware? It is whatever people can learn that helps them to solve problems, make decisions, understand difficult concepts, and perform other intellectually demanding tasks better.

To draw an analogy with computers, mindware is software for the mind—the programs you run in your mind that enable you to do useful things with data stored in your memory.

Or to make a more prosaic but equally apt analogy with cooking, mindware is like kitchenware, the equipment of the mind, . . . that enable[s] people to cook up something compelling out of the information at their disposal.

Or to put it yet another way, mindware is whatever knowledge, understanding, and attitudes you have that support you in making the best use of your mind.”

[ David Perkins, Outsmarting IQ: The Emerging Science of Learnable Intelligence (Free Press / Simon & Schuster, New York, 1995), p. 13) ]

Salto, June 24th, 2018


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