Reply to post: AI, my ass

Google's home tat falls flat as a soufflé – but look out Android makers


AI, my ass

Got a nasty case of postitis today so it's time to shut up, which I'll do on a grateful note: Thank you, ElReg, for mentioning that almost every time "AI" is touted by some lizard or other ... it is absolutely nothing of the kind.

So far as I have been able to tell, everything propagandised as AI today is just execution of algorithms. Fast processing. Parallel processing. Use of neural-net analogues to make runtime choices. Processing that records results of various actions to inform future choices. Introduction of occasional random seeds to provoke "evolution" of different flows and conditions. Processing which allows new algorithms to be instantiated and executed, usually based on recorded experience. I could go on, but ...

No matter what it looks like or how impressive the results (and the Go victory was massively impressive), there is no evidence of intelligence, intuition, imagination or spontaneity. Programmers can be clever, even intelligent. Their programs cannot, yet.

Google and other marketeers say "AI" when they're talking about "Big, big database" and "Flexible algorithms".

Personally, I'll accept AI as a thing when I can interact in real (human) time with a machine which—

* Converses as an intelligent human might do

* Demonstrates exceptional knowledge relevant to the topic

* Gradually divines my own level of intelligence and knowledge and adjusts to that

* Offers opinion which can be backed up with evidence and reason

* Shows awareness of contrary opinion and demonstrates ability to understand why an alternate view might be held, or even might be valid

* Picks up emotional cues, and responds appropriately

* Acts/responds in ways which are to its benefit even if possibly harmful to others, to make its survival more likely, even unto telling lies, fabricating evidence, "playing" my weaknesses

* Demonstrates an unsynthetic sense of humour, i.e. not just telling 'knock knock' jokes but discovering humour and irony in topics which seem prima facie to be devoid of humour, responding to subtle cues of humour, occasionally *surprising itself* with a spontaneous laugh

* Showing appropriate mood, e.g. gravity following humour if the topic is, basically, tragic; with contrition for bad taste, showing respect for others' feelings

* Cringes convincingly at my rotten puns

This will be true AI. It will be clever but not obnoxiously so, charismatic, witty, seductive, helpful, competent, supportive, charming and hugely inspiring of confidence and trust.

And potentially extremely dangerous, of course.

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