Example of how the Turing test was done. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
So if you or I took the Turing test, would we pass? Or fail?
Hold that thought. Ever since we fabricated our first computers, we’ve wondered, can they think? Can they be made to think? They are superb at number-crunching, at solving intricate problems, at repetitive tasks, even at keeping appointments in order. But that “smart” phone you’re reading this on—oh yes, it’s a computer—how smart is it? Can it think?
Which raises a more fundamental question: what’s meant by “thinking”? Computers can add up a row of figures in a fraction of a second, but is that thinking? Or ask this: if your friend adds up a row of figures swiftly, is she thinking? Her mind is working, but I suspect you’ll baulk at calling that “thinking”. Because there’s something almost trivial about such a task. Surely thinking implies knowledge, understanding, creativity, intelligence. Where are those when you’re adding up numbers?
And that gives you an idea of what researchers have focused on, in trying to make computers think as humans do, in the discipline known as artificial intelligence (AI)
How will AI researchers know when a computer is thinking? Well, let’s suppose we can get it to act like your pal Kanakadurga does when she’s thinking. In particular, suppose we ask a computer questions we’d ask Kanakadurga, and it gives us answers that are indistinguishable from Kanakadurga’s. Suppose it does so consistently. “Wow,” we’d say incredulously, “it’s thinking!”
I recently had to give the Project Management Institute exam at Prometric centre in Mumbai, Everonn Systems at Andheri East. The exam centre is located just past the Saki Naka junction. The exam went off well, but I encountered a couple of hassles that I sought to get clarified by the Everonn management. Though I have mailed the following communication to the e-mail address listed on their website, I have yet to receive a response. Reproduced below is the excerpt of the communication:
On the 4th of February, 2011, I gave the PMI certification exam for CAPM at your Andheri location.
Though the facilities provided were first-rate, I have a couple of points that I would like to bring to your notice.
First, the young lady making the announcements exhibited a hostile attitude. An attitude that is and was unwarranted.
Secondly, during the exam, a gentleman on the other side of the room, kept on going “Mada, Mada” throughout the exam.
This was a huge irritant and made the exam-taking a veritable nightmare.
I hope you will look into the matter with all due haste and consideration.
I received an email from the director of the management institute from which I graduated.
It addresses rumors about the quality of the school’s education.
Now, when it comes to rumors, at the personal level, the best reaction is to scoff at them.
Rebuttal is necessary only when a semblance of proof of the allegations is provided.
Publishing the letter as-is:
Mr. Fix-It Ltd.
We treat your homes like our own!
Linus Fernandes/Kalliroi Patsali/Giorgos Elia/Petros Loizou
The undersigned reader agrees that the information provided in this document is confidential and any disclosure of any information contained within, intentional or otherwise, may cause serious harm or damage to Messrs Linus Fernandes, Kalliroi Patsali, Giorgos Elia and Petros Loizou.
The reader is bound not to disclose this information without the written express consent of the above listed Messrs.
Upon request, this document is to be returned to :
Linus Fernandes/Kalliroi Patsali/Giorgos Elia/Petros Loizou.
Name (Typed or Printed)
This is a business plan. It does not imply any offerings.
Information of key contact person
Name: Linus Fernandes
Address: Cyprus International Institute of Management
21 Akademias Avenue
P.O Box 20378
Tel: +357 22462246
Fax: +357 22331121
And so I want to start by giving one piece of advice to the men: when you’ve already won her heart, you don’t need to win every argument.Marriage is considered one milestone of life. Some of you may already be married. Some of you may never be married. Some of you will be married. Some of you will enjoy the experience so much, you will be married many, many times. Good for you.The next big milestone in your life is today: your graduation. The end of education. You’re done learning.
Don’t Work. Be Hated. Love Someone « Bump!
Full report of the Managerial Economics project by Linus, Eraclis & Marios here.