The Myth of Superhuman AI

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The Myth of Superhuman AI

#1  Postby VazScep » Apr 27, 2017 3:12 pm

Link

This article sums up a fair amount of my scepticism about general artificial intelligence. Generally, my experience debating people who are worried about AI is that they are working to some unstated and pretty dodgy assumptions. The article discusses a number of them.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#2  Postby tuco » Apr 27, 2017 3:33 pm

Its not necessary to have general intelligence to make some people worry. Its enough to have intelligence which emulates and surpasses their own. In other words, the question is/becomes .. what can humans do better than AI? If the answer will be .. nothing, well, whether general or not matters little.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#3  Postby VazScep » Apr 27, 2017 3:44 pm

tuco wrote:Its not necessary to have general intelligence to make some people worry. Its enough to have intelligence which emulates and surpasses their own.
I assume you didn't read the article.

I already have artificial intelligent software that emulates some of the tasks I do and which massively surpasses my abilities in them. I've even written some. They don't cause me any concern.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#4  Postby tuco » Apr 27, 2017 3:48 pm

You assume wrongly. You also said that people you debate are worried. I am not worried. On the other hand, even after reading the article, I see nothing preventing "superhuman AI" from becoming reality simply because it does not have to be what the article describes, it just has to be better than human, which is not all that much to hope for as humans are primitives, hairless monkeys or? ;)
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#5  Postby VazScep » Apr 27, 2017 4:28 pm

Better than human at what? And why would anyone bother trying to build AIs that replicate the meaningless primitive, hairless ape bullshit we engage in for most of our lives? There's much more interest in building AIs to do useful stuff, not getting them to break the guiness world record for number of times you can consecutively belch the Ode to Joy.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#6  Postby Manticore » Apr 27, 2017 4:50 pm

Nobody is going to fund research into genuine AI - simply because the only real way you can tell you've got it is when it turns round and tells you to fuck off.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#7  Postby tuco » Apr 27, 2017 4:59 pm

VazScep wrote:Better than human at what? And why would anyone bother trying to build AIs that replicate the meaningless primitive, hairless ape bullshit we engage in for most of our lives? There's much more interest in building AIs to do useful stuff, not getting them to break the guiness world record for number of times you can consecutively belch the Ode to Joy.


What are humans good at? Sleep, eat and sex, anyways.

Why would anyone want to create robot indistinguishable from human? Well, why not? Because of costs? 1000000 years from now? Cmon.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#8  Postby VazScep » Apr 27, 2017 5:01 pm

tuco wrote:Why would anyone want to create robot indistinguishable from human? Well, why not? Because of costs? 1000000 years from now? Cmon.
C'mon? You say that after introducing a 1000000 time scale.

Ah fuck this thread.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#9  Postby Thommo » Apr 27, 2017 5:03 pm

Link doesn't work for me sadly. I found the first section on a different site, but not anything past the first of his 5 reasons. :(
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#10  Postby tuco » Apr 27, 2017 5:05 pm

Well, I am sorry but I think of it conceptually and that means without time constraints.

I got the point of the article, I think, that specialized AI is likely while (and why) general is not. I agree with it. My whole point was that superhuman AI is not necessarily a myth ~ is not impossible.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#11  Postby Matthew Shute » Apr 27, 2017 5:09 pm

Thommo wrote:Link doesn't work for me sadly. I found the first section on a different site, but not anything past the first of his 5 reasons. :(

Same. 404, page not found.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#12  Postby laklak » Apr 28, 2017 2:00 am

The AIs are hiding.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#13  Postby Cito di Pense » Apr 28, 2017 3:29 am

Manticore wrote:Nobody is going to fund research into genuine AI - simply because the only real way you can tell you've got it is when it turns round and tells you to fuck off.


Well, you're taking the line of designating AI as something somebody might mistake for a human when it talks to you from the other side of a wall. How many different tests would you want to run, the two of you talking about your kids, before you got bored with the project?

The quote about fooling some of the people some of the time seems to wait in the wings. Also, got a kick out of your deployment of the word 'genuine'. You know, as opposed to 'simulated'.

Your take is not, however, the message I took away from the article. I paid attention to the bits about the processes that take 1:1 wall-clock time to simulate.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#14  Postby Thommo » Apr 28, 2017 9:24 am

Link is back up again for me. Quite a good read, provoked some thoughts at the very least.

Despite the title it's very upbeat and highly speculative. My own reaction was to take it with a pinch of salt, but be thankful it didn't read like the almost endless churn of singularity narrative, or similar.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#15  Postby tuco » Apr 28, 2017 1:58 pm

Indeed, its an interesting article just like this one.

What I do not understand is why VazScep seemed pissed off when I was not singing ode to joy. At least I've read it and spent time and energy to reply, unlike others.

At the same time we will integrate these various modes of cognition into more complicated, complex societies of mind. Some of these complexes will be more complex than us, and because they will be able to solve problems we can’t, some will want to call them superhuman. But we don’t call Google a superhuman AI even though its memory is beyond us, because there are many things we can do better than it. These complexes of artificial intelligences will for sure be able to exceed us in many dimensions, but no one entity will do all we do better. It’s similar to the physical powers of humans. The industrial revolution is 200 years old, and while all machines as a class can beat the physical achievements of an individual human (speed of running, weight lifting, precision cutting, etc.), there is no one machine that can beat an average human in everything he or she does.

Even as the society of minds in an AI become more complex, that complexity is hard to measure scientifically at the moment. We don’t have good operational metrics of complexity that could determine whether a cucumber is more complex than a Boeing 747, or the ways their complexity might differ. That is one of the reasons why we don’t have good metrics for smartness as well. It will become very difficult to ascertain whether mind A is more complex than mind B, and for the same reason to declare whether mind A is smarter than mind B. We will soon arrive at the obvious realization that “smartness” is not a single dimension, and that what we really care about are the many other ways in which intelligence operates — all the other nodes of cognition we have not yet discovered.


The thing is, there will probably be no need to realize "smartness" as there will be products of such as measurable results.

Better than human at what?

But we don’t call Google a superhuman AI even though its memory is beyond us, because there are many things we can do better than it.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#16  Postby crank » Apr 28, 2017 4:02 pm

Turing never meant his test to be verry interesting or worthwhile. It was a stopgap until people could understand AI and what it is and isn't. Chomsky comments on this by asking do airplanes fly? Most of us would say of course, silly question. But do submarines swim? Not so quick to answer, right? In some languages, submarines do swim and airplanes don''t quite fly. The idea is asking if an AI thinks, as in thinks like and as good or better than a human, is going to be down to the definitions and assumptions in peoples heads. AI might be designed to emulate human thought as closely as possible, but there certainly is no reason to make them like that.

To worry about AIs is to assume they will have motives built into them. Most scenarios people worry about, like the Skynet' idea, make no sense to me, where is the motivation, the desire, coming from? It has to be built in, don't build it in and they won't decide we'd all be better off turned into paper clips.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#17  Postby VazScep » Apr 28, 2017 4:59 pm

Thommo wrote:Link is back up again for me. Quite a good read, provoked some thoughts at the very least.

Despite the title it's very upbeat and highly speculative. My own reaction was to take it with a pinch of salt, but be thankful it didn't read like the almost endless churn of singularity narrative, or similar.
It's quite possible that I messed up this thread by not stressing the intended context, which is the pants-wetting of the likes of Sam Harris and Hawking (neither of whom have any credentials in a relevant field) and the utopian sci-fi porn of Kurzweil (I think he used to make electronic keyboards). Those guys are all in the world of super speculation. The article I posted is just a rejoinder, suggesting that the likes of Harris, Hawking and Kurzweil are engaged in naive speculation. It's asking "but what if...?", not countering with a bunch of equally naive proclamations on the nature of intelligence.

Maybe we're reading different articles. It's possible that they've had website problems after they appeared yesterday on Hacker News.

Any response about what will happen a million years from now is so off-base that I just have to let the relevant poster drift off into their own little world.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#18  Postby tuco » Apr 28, 2017 5:28 pm

lol alright then .. any speculation about future of "superhuman AI" is just that .. speculation, little or huge.

I know nothing about AI but the idea that couple of kilograms of grey matter with consumption of hundreds of calories is capable of unachievable intelligence seems pretty naive to little me. Its just physics.
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#19  Postby VazScep » Apr 28, 2017 5:43 pm

crank wrote:Turing never meant his test to be verry interesting or worthwhile. It was a stopgap until people could understand AI and what it is and isn't.[//quote]I think the test was a pretty good first go, and his original paper is great. I suspect what Turing didn't factor in was that humans are way too willing to assign meaning to nonsense, as we first saw with ELIZA.

To worry about AIs is to assume they will have motives built into them. Most scenarios people worry about, like the Skynet' idea, make no sense to me, where is the motivation, the desire, coming from? It has to be built in, don't build it in and they won't decide we'd all be better off turned into paper clips.
To be fair to Harris, he says some sensible stuff, that it isn't about the machine having bad motivations, but us giving machines specs to fulfill that they fulfill in the wrong way. Hence, maximising paper clip production might involve killing all hoomans.

The thing is, we've known this since forever in AI and in software engineering in general. One of my favourite computer science quotes about the spec being wrong is Alan Kay's:

"And the users all said with a laugh and a taunt: it's just what we asked for, but not what we want."

And anyone who has done AI stuff has encountered situations where the machine came up with a solution that you look at and go "No! That's cheating!" In fact, it's a matter of routine. I'd propose that the definition of AI is it's code that surprises you when it runs, and it's not always a good surprise. But when the machine solves your problem the wrong way, it's you who is to blame, because it was your spec that was just shit. Alan Kay's joke can be spun back on the customer with the response "but it is what you signed off on."

The problem of trusting specifications is something we've been aware of for decades, and we have mitigations. A first step is to make sure you don't hook up the program trying to figure out how to beat the greatest Go player with your nuclear launch systems (hint: to beat the greatest Go player in the world, just annihilate everyone living in China.)
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Re: The Myth of Superhuman AI

#20  Postby VazScep » Apr 28, 2017 5:53 pm

tuco wrote:I know nothing about AI
But that didn't stop you weighing in with your uneducated assertions and then doing the whole "C'mon" to someone who is educated in the field?

Yeah, fuck this thread.
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