True Artificial Intelligence?

  spoilt victorian child 16:31 13 Jul 05

Thought i would start a philosophical thread.

Given the rapid advances increasing capabilities of technology (the new playstation will apparantly be able to process 3 trillion units of info a second).

Will we ever be able to create a computer to not only map but also replicate the functions of the human brain?

  Aspman 16:59 13 Jul 05

Maybe. But they won't know if they've done it because we can't define consciousness for a human.

  spoilt victorian child 17:06 13 Jul 05

well consciousness can be defined in simple terms as self awareness. Can that not be tested on a computer program?

  Pooke 18:54 13 Jul 05

No machine can be fully self aware as it needs to be programmed to appear to be that.

  Aspman 12:12 14 Jul 05

Conciousness has been defined in a dictionary but there is no solid scientific definition. Where is conciousness located in the brain?

Is conciousness simply being aware of your surroundings? Is it a will to exist?

I think therefore I am.

I think we'll have thinking computers quite soon but I don't think they will be classed as conscious.

Another question is would you want a self aware, conscious machine?

A la terminatior or I Robot.

  spoilt victorian child 14:41 14 Jul 05

an interesting point. One of the complex issues with consciousness is that our thoughts are inextricably linked to our evolution and biological instinct. In addition, we are 80% a product of environmental stimulus. A computer could learn to react to its environment and in simple terms i guess it is possible to program a computer to have survival and reproductive instincts. (many virus already display this characteristic)

  Aspman 11:07 15 Jul 05

Hmmm. Could depend on the capacity of the system to learn.

If the system has enough capacity it could develop conciousness or sentiance but in such an alien way that we wouldn't recognise it.

A computer with conciousness and a will to exist might force a change in how we define what it is to be 'alive'.

  Tommy Vercetti 15:59 15 Jul 05

"life" and "sentient life" are two very different things. However, sentient life would contain all the basic characteristics of life which is

to be born, to grow, to evolve, to reproduce, to interact with environment etc.

Where sentient life differs is in for example its understanding of the "will to live". Sentient life would understand the concept of death, but even simple forms of life can display a will to live in terms of a fight or flight mechanism

  Indigo 1 07:57 16 Jul 05

Do we need a "computer to replicate the functions of the human brain" ? What is wrong with the human brain then ?

I think, as has been said, that if computers do ever develop some intelligence then we would probably not recognise it as intelligence. If it depends on the ability to learn then it would never need to learn such things as hunger, cold, pain or any emotions like fear or love, so what kind of intelligence would it be ? I can only think of military applications for a machine such as that.

  Tommy Vercetti 11:24 16 Jul 05

not sure we could artificially recreate emotional intelligence. But ability to logically analyse and respond to near unlimited variety of environmental stimulus may be possible.

It would be easier to recreate Spock's brain, than McCoys!

would be concerned about military applications

  lotvic 23:10 27 Jul 05

Data on Startrek New Generation seems to manage okay

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