Sam Ghandchiسام قندچي Has AI Passed Human Intelligence? Yes and No
Sam Ghandchi

آیا هوش مصنوعی از هوش بشر جلو زده؟ آری و نه

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1. Less than two months ago on May 23, 2022, we all saw the following report in the press:


"Dr Nando de Freitas, Lead researcher at Google’s DeepMind AI division, said 'the game is over' in the decades-long quest to realize artificial general intelligence (AGI) after DeepMind unveiled an AI system capable of completing a wide range of complex tasks, from stacking blocks to writing poetry! He said "DeepMind’s new Gato AI needs to just be scaled up in order to create an AI capable of rivaling human intelligence!"* 


In other words, this AGI's ability has already passed human brain, something that was predicted by Ray Kurzweil to happen by 2029! So we are ahead of Kurzweil's prediction and Ray has actually always been on target for his AI predictions and definitely on a subject like AI and brain, that Kurzweil's PRTM sums it all up! But this is all about AI passing human *brain*! Does this mean AI is passing human *intelligence*? You are all going to frown and say 'Oh Sam not again', we are not going back to 1980's and we do not care for all that Dreyfus and Searle and the later versions who said you cannot get anywhere arguing with Zombies!  No I am not going back to all those arguments about human feelings or talking of *zoning* when human chess players were in competition with computers and won, and we all know nowadays, the computer wins! So, no, I am not going back to all those arguments and counter-arguments and actually at the time, I sided with late Marvin Minsky of MIT and late John McCarthy of Stanford, and I still do! So, then, what is my problem now? I think all the discourse at that time was centered around *brain* and what it does or does not, and the ones who negated what AI could do, did not understand that feelings, emotions, zoning, etc. are as much functions of the brain, as mathematics, and can be simulated by AI as such, and it all actually happened in the last 40 years, and here we are with the new announcement of Google's DeepMind AI Division! So what issue am I raising now about human intelligence?


2. In 1985, I published a paper entitled 'Intelligent Tools: The Cornerstone of a New Civilization.' At the time, I did not know Ray Kurzweil, but over the years I found my friend Ray and learned so much from him that I can say if I knew him at the time I wrote that paper, I would have written my paper differently because he has been and is so much ahead of the pack, then and now! At the time, I was not just reading AI pioneers such as Minsky and McCarthy. In fact I was reading a lot of Richard Leakey's works in anthropology and even read a lot of Paleontology works of Stephen Jay Gould and was very impressed by his theory of Punctuated Equilibrium. It is interesting that Ray Kurzweil also mentioned Stephen J. Gould in 2006 in his concluding remarks of 'Reinventing Humanity.' So it seems like we all cared to know about anthropology and still do! I can summarize it all in one statement: The whole focus of AI was based on the way humans separated from Primates, with a focus on the brain! Of course, other animals such as *mice* have also been the focus and as we know most biology experiments use *mice* because humans and mice share 90% human DNA. Basically the AI focused on primates and how human brain became more advanced than monkeys and this is why in my paper I discuss a lot about how tools were important in all that evolution of the brain and language, and although the paper was about *intelligent tools* including AI, nonetheless all the focus was about intelligence of the brain as we have seen in primates and humans!


3. Recently I was reading a fascinating book by Paleontologist Neil Shubin entitled 'Your Inner Fish,' which is not a new book and was published 14 years ago in 2008! The author with his colleagues discovered 'Tiktaalik' and in April 2006 it was announced in the press! Tiktaalik lived 375 million years ago and was a fish with hands that crossed into land and was a land-living ancestor of ours. If you read the whole book, not much is said about the brain and all the talk is about fish **fins** versus human **limbs**! Does that have anything to do with intelligence? I am sure robot designers would say 'yes' but their focus is to control the limbs with the brain. Lately I have been having a lot of pain to bend the little finger of my left hand which I use a lot in typing. So I stopped by the local Walgreens store and picked up something called 'Finger Splint'! It is cheap and not anything fancy and I put it on my left little finger. I noticed when typing, after couple of days, I was using my ring finger which is next to my left little finger. Then I started to feel pain in the ring finger, and moved the finger splint to my ring finger, and again unconsciously I was now using my middle left finger and did not go back to the little finger I originally used. Now if I remove the splint from the ring finger, I automatically use ring finger to type, and not the little finger anymore. This is what I consider intelligence and I do not think it has much to do with the power of my brain. Maybe I am wrong but I believe we have inherited this intelligent ability from our fish ancestors who lived about 375 million years ago!




4. Does the new AI intelligence also have the kind of intelligence described above? You may ask, do we care, as far as the things we use AI for! Maybe not, unless you are developing artificial prosthetic limbs or robotic arms! After all, we are not trying to replicate human or animal intelligence and we are just trying to make *artificial intelligence* or *non-biological intelligence*, so maybe what I discussed here does not matter. I mean for example as far as general intelligence is concerned, humans are more advanced than dogs but as far as sense of smell is considered, you can say dogs are more intelligent than humans! I do not know what to say, this is why in the title here, I wrote 'Yes and No'!


Hoping for a democratic and secular futurist republic in Iran,

Sam Ghandchi, Editor/Publisher
July 12,

























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