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Are Artificial Persons or Ai Possible in the Future?

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Are Artificial Persons or A.I. Possible in the Future?

Google has invented self-driving car. Honda has robots that can talk, walk and serve food. Tesla donated $10 million to keep A.I. beneficial to humanity. Improving Robot technology has made the robot master more and more functions. Are artificial persons possible in the future? The plots of movie, Ex Machine, could be a vital case for us to discuss the questions. To find out the answers, I will first introduce Turing test that is used to testify A.I. Then, I will explain the opinions of Functionalism that believes A.I. is possible, and discuss the Searle’s “Chinese room” counterexample to functionalism. Finally, I will give my points of view that suggest A.I. is highly possible.

(i) How Turing Test Works and What Its Goal Is.

To discuss the possibility of A.I., first we must find a way to recognize and testify A.I. Namely, what can prove that a machine have intelligent and can think. Turing test is a popular experiment that is used to testify A.I. It’s theory is that if a computer or machine can act the same way as a person, and people cannot recognize any differences between the computer and a person, then we can say that the machine or computer like a person and has A.I.

The process of Turing test is as following:

  •  It’s played with three people, a man (A), a woman (B), and a interrogator (C) who may be of either sex. The interrogator stays in a room apart from the other two. The object of the game is for the interrogator to determine which of the other two is the man and which is the woman”
  • The man (A) can lie in his answers. His job is to prevent the proper identification. The woman (B) is trying to help the interrogator.
  • Then, if a machine takes the part of A in this game, and its task was to pretend to be a woman and attempt to trick the interrogator into making an incorrect evaluation.
  • The success of the computer was determined by comparing the outcome of the game when player A is a machine against the outcome when player A is a man. Turing stated if "the interrogator decides wrongly as often when the game is played [with the computer] as he does when the game is played between a man and a woman", it may be argued that the computer is intelligent.

Turing test is considered to be a practical and useful way to recognize A.I. It is reasonable that if we cannot tell any differences of two items, these two items are supposed to be same. However, currently, the interaction in Turing test is majorly based on verbal conversation. If a Turing test can conduct in a way that face-to-face interaction between a robot and a person, like the case in the Ex Machine, it could be more precise and creditable. In the movie, the interrogator believes that Ava, a robot, has her thought, consciousness, and mind.

Therefore, Turing test is an experiment that bases on the functions of a machine. It agrees with the Functionalism, which permits Artificial Intelligence. In the following section I will explain the functionalism’s ontology of mind.

(ii) Functionalism Make Possible Future Artificial Intelligence

Functionalism believes that mind is a functional activities result. It suggests mind is no-matter since it is a pattern or a program causes by other thing, and any thing organizes properly can produce the mind. It does not care about what cause the mind. It is result importance. The theory of Functionalism describes as following:

  1. Mind and its activities exist
  2. Minds and their activity are functional entities. i.e. They are defined by their causal role, not by their substance or what they are made from. Something is a mind or a mental activity, if it does certain activities, regardless of what it is made of. Any group of things could, if organized properly, be a mind or mental activity. In humans, neurons do the job, in a “machine” computer chips might do the same job or function.

Therefore, if organize the components of a robot properly and input sufficient program, a computer can act the same function as human being. As a result, the computer will perform its mind as a person. Moreover, a computer with mind can think and is an A.I.

Functionalism believes material substance can results in the functional activities, such as mind and thinking. Therefore, it is possible to give a computer mind and thinking ability since they can be produced by material substance, such as computer hardware.

(iii) Searle’s Argument for A.I. not Possible

Searle use the example of the Chinese room to argue that A.I. is not possible because computer program only make computer response to signal without understanding the meaning of the input.

It is a counterexample against Functionalism. In this example, a man in a room does not understand any Chinese word. However, he can correctly reply the Chinese input from outside of the room by following a rule that one input matching one output. For example, he does not need to understand the meaning of “ 你好.”, but he can correctly reply with “你好” by checking a dictionary that tells him the first input symbol should answer by the output symbol.



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