Gardner MNS begins his ``survey of the cognitive sciences'' with Philosophy: ``Not only is philosophy the oldest of the cognitive sciences, but its epistemological branch has supplied the initial agenda - the list of issues and topics upon which empirically oriented cognitive scientists are working today.''
The state of cognitive science today is analogous to the early stages of development of natural science, in which philosophy played a major role. In contrast to the day-to-day business of doing natural science today in which one's philosophical position is perhaps not so germane, in cognitive science it is philosophy that crucially helps, at a very basic level, in making explicit those implicit naive stances on cognition that all of us, schooled or unschooled, hold.
Further, as Gardner emphasises, beyond acting as mere commentator on the practice of cognitive science, philosophy helps to define problems, criticise models and suggest lines of enquiry. The very questions considered in Epistemology, Philosophy of Mind, Logic and Philosophy of Science are relevant to cognitive science today: