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silverscorpion • May 18, 2011

The Chinese room argument!!!


I was just reading some random stuff on Wikipedia when I stumbled upon this article.

Chinese Room

In simple terms, the argument can be summarized as follows.

You are in a closed room. You understand nothing but English. You have an instruction manual of some sort. The manual is also in English. People outside the room write questions in Chinese on a paper and pass it to you. You refer to the instruction manual and write the answers (correct answers, by the way!!) to those questions and pass it out. In this way, you can actually carry out a meaningful conversation even though you don't know anything about Chinese.

Now, substitute yourself for a robot, the manual for a program and the questions in the paper to be the input. The robot gives some output using the manual. Now, does it amount to the machine actually understanding the question and actually thinking? Is the machine actually intelligent?

It seems to be a very strong argument against Strong AI - that it's possible for machines to actually understand something, that machines can actually think.

As I'm thinking about it, I do seem to concur with it. What do you think about this? Will true AI be ever possible?
lovejeet • May 18, 2011
i guess it won't!!! we may not create a true AI in anyways........ its just that how close we can be to the real AI. We, in that case, consider AI as a decision making capability, which indeed can be imparted, but can't be regarded as the true AI in real sense.........wat's say!!!!
ISHAN TOPRE • May 18, 2011
I think, that the robot is scanning the information. The robot must be scanning and processing the information.

Do you know captcha? The robot must be reading that pictorial information. The mechanism to read a captcha by any machine/computer does not exist in today's date but in future people may come up with such a thing.
silverscorpion • May 18, 2011
Yes, I'm sure we will..

But the point I'm making here is, even if we do come up with a 'bot' to break reCaptcha, it will still be merely executing a program and solving it.
Ultimately, the bot itself will be unaware that it is solving a Captcha or whatever else it is doing.
The point of this argument is that, self awareness, the kind that humans possess naturally, is impossible to be brought about in any machine.

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