On 11 Jan 2013, at 14:07, Craig Weinberg wrote:

On Friday, January 11, 2013 12:27:54 AM UTC-5, Brent wrote:
On 1/10/2013 9:20 PM, Craig Weinberg wrote:

On Thursday, January 10, 2013 7:33:06 PM UTC-5, Brent wrote:
On 1/10/2013 4:23 PM, Telmo Menezes wrote:

Do you think there can be something that is intelligent but not complex (and use whatever definitions of "intelligent" and "complex" you want).

A thermostat is much less complex than a human brain but intelligent under my definition.

But much less intelligent. So in effect you think there is a degree of intelligence in everything, just like you believe there's a degree of consciousness in everything. And the degree of intelligence correlates with the degree of complexity ...but you don't think the same about consciousness?


I was thinking today that a decent way of defining intelligence is just 'The ability to know "what's going on"'.

This makes it clear that intelligence refers to the degree of sophistication of awareness, not just complexity of function or structure. This is why a computer which has complex function and structure has no authentic intelligence and has no idea 'what's going on'. Intelligence however has everything to do with sensitivity, integration, and mobilization of awareness as an asset, i.e. to be directed for personal gain or shared enjoyment, progress, etc. Knowing what's going on implicitly means caring what goes on, which also supervenes on biological quality investment in experience.

Which is why I think an intelligent machine must be one that acts in its environment. Simply 'being aware' or 'knowing' are meaningless without the ability and motives to act on them.

Sense and motive are inseparable ontologically, although they can be interleaved by level. A plant for instance has no need to act on the world to the same degree as an organism which can move its location, but the cells that make up the plant act to grow and direct it toward light, extend roots to water and nutrients, etc. Ontologically however, there is no way to really have awareness which matters without some participatory opportunity or potential for that opportunity.

The problem with a machine (any machine) is that at the level which is it a machine, it has no way to participate. By definition a machine does whatever it is designed to do.

We can argue that the "natural machine" are not designed but selected. Even partially self-selected through choice of sexual partners.

Anything that we use as a machine has to be made of something which we can predict and control reliably,

Human made machine are designed in this way.

so that its sensory-motive capacities are very limited by definition. Its range of 'what's going on' has to be very narrow. The internet, for instance, passes a tremendous number of events through electronic circuits, but the content of all of it is entirely lost on it. We use the internet to increase our sense and inform our motives, but its sense and motive does not increase at all.

Our computer are not encouraged to develop themselves. They are sort of slaves. But machines in general are not predictable, unless we limit them in some way, as we do usually (a bit less so in AI research, but still so for the applications: the consumers want obedient machines). You have a still a pre-Gödel or pre-Turing conception of machine. We just don't know what universal machine/number are capable of.



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