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David Deutsch – On Artificial Intelligence

David Deutsch – On Artificial Intelligence
It is uncontroversial that the human brain has capabilities that are, in some respects, far superior to those of all other known objects in the cosmos. It is the only kind of object capable of understanding that the cosmos is even there, or why there are infinitely many prime numbers, or that apples fall because of the curvature of space-time, or that obeying its own inborn instincts can be morally wrong, or that it itself exists. Nor are its unique abilities confined to such cerebral matters. The cold, physical fact is that it is the only kind of object that can propel itself into space and back without harm, or predict and prevent a meteor strike on itself, or cool objects to a billionth of a degree above absolute zero, or detect others of its kind across galactic distances. But no brain on Earth is yet close to knowing what brains do in order to achieve any of that functionality. Why? Despite this long record of failure, AGI must be possible. Turing fully understood universality.

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IBM senses change with its annual “5-in-5” list for 2012 As the year nears its close, IBM, as it has every year since 2006, has pulled out the crystal ball and given us its predictions of five innovations that it believes will impact our lives in the next five years. For this year’s “5-in-5” list, IBM has taken a slightly different approach, with each entry on the list relating to our senses. The company believes cognitive computing whereby computers learn rather than passively relying on programming will be at the core of these innovations, enabling systems that will enhance and augment each of our five senses. View all Touch

Robots aren’t getting smarter — we’re getting dumber Huge artificial intelligence news! Our robot overlords have arrived! A “supercomputer” has finally passed the Turing Test! Except, well, maybe not. Here’s what actually happened: For five whole minutes, a chatbot managed to convince one out of three judges that it was “Eugene Goostman” — a 13-year-old Ukrainian boy with limited English skills. Alan Turing would not be impressed.

Constraints On Our Universe As A Numerical Simulation Is Our Universe a Numerical Simulation? Silas R. Beane, Zohreh Davoudi and Martin J. Savage This is a general audience presentation of the work entitled ``Constraints on the Universe as a Numerical Simulation'' by Silas R. Philosophical Disquisitions: Polanyi's Paradox: Will humans maintain any advantage over machines? (Previous Entry) There is no denying that improvements in technology allow machines to perform tasks that were once performed best by humans. This is at the heart of the technological displacement we see throughout the economy. The key question going forward is whether humans will maintain an advantage in any cognitive or physical activity. The answer to this question will determine whether the future of the economy is one in which humans continue to play a relevant part, or one in which humans are left behind. To help us answer this question it is worth considering the paradoxes of technological improvement.

Artificial intelligence: ‘Homo sapiens will be split into a handful of gods and the rest of us’ If you wanted relief from stories about tyre factories and steel plants closing, you could try relaxing with a new 300-page report from Bank of America Merrill Lynch which looks at the likely effects of a robot revolution. But you might not end up reassured. Though it promises robot carers for an ageing population, it also forecasts huge numbers of jobs being wiped out: up to 35% of all workers in the UK and 47% of those in the US, including white-collar jobs, seeing their livelihoods taken away by machines. Haven’t we heard all this before, though? From the luddites of the 19th century to print unions protesting in the 1980s about computers, there have always been people fearful about the march of mechanisation.

The Doomsday Invention I. Omens Last year, a curious nonfiction book became a Times best-seller: a dense meditation on artificial intelligence by the philosopher Nick Bostrom, who holds an appointment at Oxford. Does the ‘Chinese room’ argument preclude a robot uprising? In this blog series, Olle Häggström, author of Here Be Dragons, explores the risks and benefits of advances in biotechnology, nanotechnology, and machine intelligence. In this third and final post, Olle challenges John Searle’s ‘Chinese room’ argument about the future of robotics. There has been much recent talk about a possible robot apocalypse. One person who is highly skeptical about this possibility is philosopher John Searle. In a 2014 essay, he argues that “the prospect of superintelligent computers rising up and killing us, all by themselves, is not a real danger.” More specifically, he says:

Can a robot be conscious? In this blog series, Olle Häggström, author of Here Be Dragons, explores the risks and benefits of advances in biotechnology, nanotechnology, and machine intelligence. In this second post, Olle explores the computational theory of mind concept. Can a robot be conscious? I will try to discuss this without getting bogged down in the rather thorny issue of what consciousness –– really is. Instead, let me first address whether robot consciousness is an important topic to think about.

Could machines have become self-aware without our kn... Usually when people imagine a self-aware machine, they picture a device that emerges through deliberate effort and that then makes its presence known quickly, loudly, and (in most scenarios) disastrously. Even if its inventors have the presence of mind not to wire it into the nuclear missile launch system, the artificial intelligence will soon vault past our capacity to understand and control it. If we’re lucky, the new machine will simply break up with us, like the operating system in the movie Her. Fear our new robot overlords: This is why you need to take artificial intelligence seriously There are a lot of major problems today with tangible, real-world consequences. A short list might include terrorism, U.S.-Russian relations, climate change and biodiversity loss, income inequality, health care, childhood poverty, and the homegrown threat of authoritarian populism, most notably associated with the presumptive nominee for the Republican Party, Donald Trump.

Hail to the Computer While at least some AI researchers concede that creating a presidential computer is within the realm of possibility, that is an entirely different question than whether we should elect an AI president. Siegel, for his part, is still convinced Watson would make a stand-up president. Yet Sharkey and many others who are actually tasked with developing artificial intelligences have a far different outlook. In the words of Alex Pentland, a renowned computer scientist at MIT's Media Lab, electing an AI to be president "sounds like a very, very bad idea." To put it bluntly, there's a difference between being a bureaucrat and being a leader.

theconversation Given that the reality of AI may be fast approaching, it’s of the utmost importance that we work out what might a future with artificial intelligence might look like. Last year, an open letter with signatories including Stephen Hawking and Nick Bostrom called for AI to be of demonstrable benefit to humanity, or risk something that exceeds our ability to control it. AI, as conceived of in popular culture, does not yet exist, even if autonomous and expert systems do. Smartphones might not be supercomputers, but they are called “smartphones” for good reason, in terms of how their operating systems function. Equally, we are happy to talk about a computer game’s “AI”, but gamers quickly learn to take advantage of its limitations and inability to “think” creatively. There is an important difference between these systems and what is termed Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) or “strong AI”, an AI with the general intelligence and aptitudes of a human.

WATCH: Elon Musk explains why we’re already cyborgs — and probably living in a videogame We’ve long thought of cyborgs — that is, human beings that are part biological and part mechanical — as science-fiction tropes that are a long way from becoming a reality. However, SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk thinks that cyborgs are already here, whether we realize it or not. What’s more, he says we’re going to have to upgrade our hardware very soon or risk becoming obsolete. During a talk with tech journalists Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg at the Code Conference 2016 this week, Musk made the case that human beings are already cyborgs who have “super powers” that weren’t imaginable a generation ago. “You have a digital version of yourself, a partial version of yourself online in the form of your emails, your social media, and all the things that you do,” Musk explained.