"Recursive Cortical Networks"
...is the model that Vicarious have publicly claimed to be working on. I wonder whether it's got any relationship to Confabulation Theory?
Confabulation theory was the first account I came across which seemed plausible from an evolutionary viewpoint - it posits that the same basic architectures that evolved for coordinating muscle movement were then specialized in evolving higher cognitive functions - and in light of the observation that comparatively few layers [think "gate delays" as an EE analogy] of processing can take place between our sensory input and our reactions if we are to react in a usefully short time.
In any case, with 5 out of 8 of their team members
sporting PhDs, and the other three also sounding like overachieving types, it looks like it would be a very interesting place to work.