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Now that's sticker shock: Sticky labels make image-recog AI go bananas for toasters

Lee D Silver badge

There's a difference there...

That's quite a reasonable mistake to make. Thinking any silver blob next to a banana turns the banana into a toaster is not.

The human will apply the categories learned, and adjust if you say "no it's not". The AI can't without expensive retraining from scratch, and such retraining is liable to taint existing detection too. The human learns, the machine doesn't (despite the moniker "machine learning").

Everywhere I see computers replacing humans they are incredibly dumbed down and not applying intelligence at all. Supermarket checkouts... are they "guessing" user's ages like humans do? No. They need a human. You use computers and machines where you can describe the task required exactly. If you can't it has unreliable and unpredictable results. Anywhere it matters, you have a human. Anywhere it doesn't matter (e.g. a banana factory), well, it doesn't matter. Human or computer are on a par because the computer might be quicker but it's dumber too.

The car park wouldn't let me out last night as it read my number plate (beginning with LL) as something else for the ticket (beginning with CL). I had to actually put the ticket into the machine.

Pretty much this is what AI / ML / recognition has always been... works okay, but far from infallible, and only utilised where it doesn't matter about being wrong. Voice recognition literally cannot understand my voice, but all humans who speak my language can. Image recognition is essentially atrocious and easy to mislead without extra controls. Text recognition is the entire basis of using CAPTCHAs... computers are so bad at it and always have been (who actually OCRs nowadays?). Anything requiring interpretation of complex data... don't give it to a machine unless the machine is told exactly what to do.

This is precisely why you don't want a "self-driving" car, by the way. Not that you can't make a self-driving car. But one that tries to be human to self-drive is a dangerous and unreliable beast.

We are literally DECADES at least from any decent amount of AI, I would actually posit that we DON'T have it, in any substantial form, today. Precisely because you cannot tell what it's doing, therefore cannot control it sufficiently, therefore cannot fix it when it's wrong.

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