Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Why Watson and Siri Are Not Real AI

A recent article from Popular Mechanics 
raises the common argument that what people call AI actually isn't AI. This argument is based on John Searle's Chinese Room thought experiment in which he clearly demonstrates that computers just manipulate symbols. They do not, cannot, ane never will understand what those symbols mean. However, Alan Turing, the father of AI, never claimed that machines would understand. His test for machine intelligence, now called the Turing Test, he originally called "the imitation game." He envisaged that computers would "imitate" intelligence not be intelligent in the sense that we are. Read the Popuar Mechanics article but keep this in mind - it's ok for computers to imitate intelligence using different techiques to people just as it's ok for planes to fly without flapping their wings like birds.