So Turing Got It Wrong?

I encounter many articles from sources between eager geeks, silicon valley billionaire pasychopaths and highly qualified academics on topics related to artificial intelligence, neural networks and deep learning. But as they witter on about algorithms, big data and ever more powerful computers they do not seem to grasp  there is more to human conscious intelligence which we are nowhere near to understanding but which must be understood if we are to to model human intuition.

The Turing Test, developed in the 1950s by computer pioneer Alan Turing was intended to discriminate between humans and machines by asking  certain questions of a machine or a human and observing answers which a human is expected to give and that would be impossible for a machine to answer. We can consider this emotional intelligence as an area the machine would not be able to understand.

The only machine yet claimed to have passed the test was presented to judges as a 12 year old Ukrainian boy who had not been learning English for very long. Nothing like cheating to get the result you want is there? Machine learning models can learn some probabilistic parameters to come up with an output representations but cannot understand the emotions or expression or feelings behind a statement.

There is more than just probability estimation in human intelligence. A more relevant question is how can we model consciousness? If we could model consciousness,we could then have an understanding whether an individual is experiencing an emotion and that it will reflect in the way it is giving out those answers.

So the ultimate question is “How do we model Consciousness?”

That’s is the great question all the people who post on A I, neural networks, deep learning and the rest should be able to answer, but cannot.

We have no idea how human consciousness evolved, what triggered that leap from the mammal mind (some would say the mammal brain, because the mind is the home of that mystery which makes us human.) Both evolutionists and religionists agree there is “something” about humankind that separates us from even the large brained animals, but nobody can explain what a human mind actually is.

Some years ago I had an extended stay in hospital after a catastrophic brain haemorrhage. It took out about 35% of my brain tissue and the initial prognosis was there would be little left of what made me who I am. Amazingly my memory, together with language and cognitive skills survived almost intact (I was paralyzed on one side but I was still me.) Nobody was offering explanations though I asked many times, wanting to understand what had happened to me, until some months later, while talking to an endocrinologist who was investigating the blood disorder that had led my blood pressure to spike, and he said, “We are only just beginning to understand that the brain and the mind are two very different things.”

What is the human mind? How does it relate to the brain? Dogs, Chimpanzees and Dolphins can be playful and can relate to members of other species, but they cannot handle abstract ideas. Why do we not see animals with minds? There are no physical characteristics of the human brain that suggest they provide thecreative and processing power that defines human thought and problem solving skills.

If we think of just a few of the qualities which make homo sapiens sapiens (literally ‘man who knows he knows’) unique among all living creatures we start to get an idea of the magnitude of task facing those who aspire to create human — like intelligence in a computer.

I have always said, “the only way we can hope to create true artificial intelligence is by radically redefining what we mean by intelligence.”


Isolation, the curse of the Independent Minded

I’m a bit stuck today, just can’t get myself going. It may be withdrawal symptoms, I finished rereading The Girl Who Kicked A Hornet’s Nest last Sunday and thus am parted from Lisbeth Salander and company for a couple of years.

Or it may be winter blues, being restricted to a very slow walk my outdoor time is very restricted at this time of year and in the kind of weather we have been having.

Or perhaps it is that editing a novel is a pain in the arse.

Still, as most of the people who read Boggart Blog are pretty independent minded (I doubt many sheeple return for a second helping) I thought you might enjoy something I stumbled on today.

Isolation, The Curse Of The Independent Mind

life as an independent minded human
Picture Source:


from Julian Walsh atWaking Times –

Today I wish to address to you a certain brand of loneliness. It is perhaps the most debilitating form of the condition. The state is sometimes referred to as “isolation” or the sense of being disconnected, apart, abandoned or simply “different” from everyone else you know. This situation is compounded when friends, coworkers and even family members begin seeing you differently. They’re not so much intrigued by your positive changes but rather disappointed by your shift in attitude and may even be concerned for your mental stability. These otherwise well-meaning souls are occasionally characterized as the “sleeping” and you may very well be part of the “awakening.”

I say “awakening” because the experience appears to be very dynamic and fluid by nature. I’m not sure I would recognize or even fully appreciated an “awake” mind for they are far and few between us. But for those who are experiencing various stages of wakening, you are as visible to me as I am to you.

Read all at Waking Times

Under The Influence Of Mind Altering Drugs Eight Legs Is A Few too Many

We’ve all heard about the men who stare at goats or walls or whatever, attempts by America’s secret services to harness out alleged para/super normal mental abilities.

On reading this report I wondered just what the guys at Nasa might have been smoking in their fag breaks.

Apparently in 1995 Nasa carried out experiments with mind altering drugs to note their effects.
Now they may have used themselves as guinea pigs, but they certainly didn’t admit to it, probably no funding that way.

Instead they fed LSD, Benzedrine, Mescaline, Marijuana and Caffeine to ….spiders.

Now this is the bit that makes me wonder about this research, they then “Set the spiders to work making webs.”

You can do that?
You can order a spider to make a web?

“Okay, my little arachnid friend, time to go to work. Get spinning buddy!”

Well, hardly surprisingly the spiders on pot lost interest half way through and just lay there, giggling.

The ones on LSD made a start, but just kept climbing higher and saying, “Like, wow, Man, has anyone got any mushrooms?”

The spiders on speed completed their webs in record time, but the work was rather slapdash.

But it was the spiders on Caffeine that gave the most interesting results.

Whilst they worked reasonably fast, only having small brains, they were forever losing their place on their frequent trips from the website down to the lab where the coffeee percolator was kept.
On returning they would simply start again, because they couldn’t remember where they were up to.
This, naturally resulted in some very haphazard web designs, which proved rather inefficient for their designated purpose, i.e. trapping small fling insects.

The spiders then came up with an invention that has been a boon to the internet and helped secure its world-wide domination.
Using a complex series of cable they were able to position a camera on their construction site and link it to a computer terminal in the lab, enabling them to keep watch on their building work, whilst taking those very important coffee breaks, and thus the web-cam was born.