Perceptual Control Theory

  • author: Will Powers
  • argues that brain works in "levels"
    • lower level controls muscle tensions
    • higher level controls lower level - think to "move leg"
    • even higher level controls level below it - walk (move one leg the another), etc...
  • control theory is how thermostat works: too low temperature? - heat up - too high? - cool down
    • Powers argues that we do same thing on multiple different levels (from body temperature, to food, to social interactions) - all seem related to homeostasis
  • we switch effortlessly between concentrating on low-level concepts and high-level concepts that make the low-level ones automatic
  • "everything is a control system" is an attempt to improve on "everything is stimulus-response" (behaviorism)
  • related to Cybernetics and Self-Cybernetics
Szymon Kaliski © 2022