Is superintelligence possible?

Daniel Dennett and David Chalmers sat down to "debate" the possibility of superintelligence.  I quoted "debate" because this was a pretty congenial discussion. (Note: there's a transcript of this video on the Edge site, which might be more time efficient for some than watching a one hour video.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHN_o6RqrHY Usually for these types of discussions, … Continue reading Is superintelligence possible?

SMBC on what separates humans from machines

Source: Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal (Click through for full sized version and the red button caption.) My own take on this is that what separates humans from machines is our survival instinct.  We intensely desire to survive, and procreate.  Machines, by and large, don't.  At least they won't unless we design them to.  If we … Continue reading SMBC on what separates humans from machines

Why we’ll know AI is conscious before it will

At Nautilus, Joel Frohlich posits how we'll know when an AI is conscious.  He starts off by accepting David Chalmers' concept of a philosophical zombie, but then makes this statement. But I have a slight problem with Chalmers’ zombies. Zombies are supposed to be capable of asking any question about the nature of experience. It’s worth … Continue reading Why we’ll know AI is conscious before it will

Is it time to retire the term “artificial intelligence”?

Eric Siegel at Big Think, in a new "Dr. Data Show" on the site, explains Why A.I. is a big fat lie: 1) Unlike AI, machine learning's totally legit. I gotta say, it wins the Awesomest Technology Ever award, forging advancements that make ya go, "Hooha!". However, these advancements are almost entirely limited to supervised machine learning, … Continue reading Is it time to retire the term “artificial intelligence”?

The dangers of artificial companionship

Lux Alpstraum at Undark argues against "Our Irrational Fear of Sexbots": When most people envision a world where human partners are abandoned in favor of robots, the robots they picture tend to be reasonably good approximations of flesh-and-blood humans. The sexbots of “Westworld” are effectively just humans who can be programmed and controlled by the … Continue reading The dangers of artificial companionship

Is the singularity right around the corner?

You've probably heard the narrative before.  At some point, we will invent an artificial intelligence that is more intelligent than we are.  The superhuman intelligence will then have the capability to either build an improved version of itself, or engineer upgrades that improve its own intelligence.  This will set off a process where the system … Continue reading Is the singularity right around the corner?

Could a neuroscientist understand a microprocessor? Is that a relevant question?

A while back, Julia Galef on Rationally Speaking interviewed Eric Jonas, one of the authors of a study that attempted to use neuroscience techniques on a simple computer processor. The field of neuroscience has been collecting more and more data, and developing increasingly advanced technological tools in its race to understand how the brain works. … Continue reading Could a neuroscientist understand a microprocessor? Is that a relevant question?

Recommendation: Dark Intelligence

I've been meaning to check out Neal Asher's books for some time.  They keep coming up as recommendations on Amazon, Goodreads, and in various other venues, and they sound enticing, like the kind of fiction I'd enjoy.  Last week, I finally read the first book of his most recent trilogy, 'Dark Intelligence'. The universe described … Continue reading Recommendation: Dark Intelligence