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View Diary: Open thread for night owls: The end of labor—protecting workers from robots (140 comments)

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  •  Kurzweil would agree (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lawrence, Aunt Pat

    His prediction is by 2029 AI will be equal to humans and that soon after (15 more years) there would be little to distinguish between humans and computers as far (economic) ability goes.  One would guess in the run up to that, anyone not augmented by AI (chip implantation, etc) would be out competed/obsolete.

    •  SciFi writers have been saying that for decades (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ten canvassers, JeffW

      but actual AI researchers haven't.  Not only are we nowhere near that kind of technology, but nobody even has any ideas that are likely to bear fruit.  It's like time travel - a fun plot device, but unlikely to ever happen.  Ever.

      Early to rise and early to bed Makes a man healthy, wealthy, and dead. --Not Benjamin Franklin

      by Boundegar on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 03:35:52 AM PST

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      •  You can't escape exponential growth of information (0+ / 0-)

        It will happen, it's just of matter of time.  Perhaps not exactly along Kurzweil's timeline, but Moore's Law and it's analogs can't be avoided.

        Consider, what is the theoretical limit to information transmission speed?  There is none.  All you need is a faster DSP processor (a computer), and indeed from the 1980's to mid 2000's, the limit to  transmission speed to the home has increased from essentially 10000 (Modems) bits/second to 1000000000 bits/second (FTTH). Roughly a factor of 10000 increase in 25 years or approximately what Moore's Law would predict (2^13 ~ 10000).

        What else?  The ubiquitous internet and mobile computing.  The emergence of Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Blogs.  HST accounting for 70% of stock market trading volume.  The 10 TB disk drive.  Deep Blue beats Kasparov, Watson wins Jeopardy.  Checkers completely solved.  Even Siri.

        What could a person do now without computer aid in the US?  In China?  In New Guinea?  And what is their life trajectory?

        Will things ease?  Slow down?  No, they will accelerate, in fact the theory is they they will accelerate exponentially.  The singularity is about the effect of e^x overwhelming anything, everything.  It will happen and it's going to be beyond anyone's comprehension.

        •  Your faith is touching. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ten canvassers, JeffW

          However, nothing in the real world grows exponentially without limit.  Ever.

          Also, it's beside the point of my post, which is that true artificial intelligence - according to actual researchers in the field - is no nearer now than it was in the 1950's.  There is something missing besides brute processing power.  

          That "something" might be a million years of evolution.  I'm not an expert myself, so that's just a guess.

          Early to rise and early to bed Makes a man healthy, wealthy, and dead. --Not Benjamin Franklin

          by Boundegar on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 05:43:54 AM PST

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          •  It's not power, it is about learning algorithms (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JeffW

            Look at Siri.  All those data points (users) and all that Business Intelligence data yield crappy searches and crappy voice recognition.  I believed Dragon Naturally Speaking + 100mil users + 100TB of data + 2 years = voice recognition and Natural Language voice interface.  Nope.  Fail, fail, fail.  Every time I think AI or something that is really Judgement-related (e.g., what humans do well) will be automated, it looks like I am wrong by another 50 years.  So, yes, I agree.

            Mmmmm. Sprinkles. - H.J. Simpson.

            by ten canvassers on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 05:48:35 AM PST

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          •  True experts in the field know (0+ / 0-)

            that IBM's Watson computer winning at Jeopardy against past champions was a watershed event.  Tasks that traditionally involve humans remembering, making intelligent guesses and informed estimates, even if backed up by filing through mountains of data, will be increasingly impacted Watson and its derivatives. The natural language processing capability exhibited by Watson will impact medical and health services, financial and economic analysis, help desks, legal firms and myriad other fields that now require human reasoning and judgement.  Watson was as much about great programming and clever heuristics as powerful computers.  Something like Watson was unattainable ten years previous, ten years from now its capability will be commonplace and transparently incorporated into people's everyday lives.  

            •  One specialized application... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ten canvassers

              ...does not make a generalized AI application suite. And Watson ain't small!

              Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

              by JeffW on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:16:08 AM PST

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              •  Deep blue was big, bulky, and specialized (0+ / 0-)

                when it beat Kasparov in 1997.  Today its capability fits in a desktop computer and its deep dive analytic architecture is today used for general data mining.    

                •  It's a tool, not an operative... (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  ten canvassers

                  ...that's the state of AI at this point. The computer can't just decide to do something on its own.

                  Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

                  by JeffW on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:12:26 AM PST

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                  •  Fundamentally, what's needed by you then? (0+ / 0-)

                    If you took a riding lawnmower, put it in drive and let it go, it sure will look like it doing stuff on its own.  If you put a collision avoidance computer in it, now it's making decisions.

                    If someone took Watson and bolted on a parser and wget and a thread detector and randomly set it to answer questions in blogs, how long do you think would it take you be able to tell it's not human?

                    •  I don't know... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      ten canvassers
                      If someone took Watson and bolted on a parser and wget and a thread detector and randomly set it to answer questions in blogs, how long do you think would it take you be able to tell it's not human?
                      ...but maybe if you did that, had IBM set up a account for it on Daily Kos, and let it lurk for a while, we'd find out.

                      At minimum, such a machine would have to consistently pass a Turing Test for me to consider it more than a tool.

                      Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

                      by JeffW on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 09:26:14 AM PST

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                      •  So it need not do stuff on it own, then (0+ / 0-)

                        Or if you still require that, you agree there are some pretty simple tools and a loop to make it look like it?

                        You need it to respond like a human to queries (pass the Turing test as you said).

                        I wonder what Alex Trebek thought?

                        •  It should be able to act on its own... (0+ / 0-)

                          ...to be considered a true, fully-functional AI. Otherwise, it's just a damned big database.

                          Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

                          by JeffW on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 12:17:10 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

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