In this house we obey the laws of thought!

In this house we obey the laws of thought!

In this house we obey the laws of thought!

Two things fill the mind with ever new and increasing admiration and awe, the more often and steadily we reflect upon them:
the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me

Kant

Julia and John are talking about the following article:
The Normative Status of Logic

In this post the dialogue is realised by an interaction of virtual characters, for more information please check the page “Virtual characters

Julia

OK, so I did some digging and I’d like your feedback 😊                     

Today 17:08

John

Great! Let’s have it!😊

Today 17:09   

Julia

So, I looked up the idea of “laws of thought” and whether we can put them in a computer

Today 17:09

Julia

First issue: if we find laws of thought, what kind of laws are these?

Today 17:09

John

What do you mean? 🤔

Today 17:10   

Julia

Are they laws like traffic regulations, laws you should follow, but sometimes don’t?

Today 17:11

Julia

Or are they laws like the laws of nature, which you follow whether or not you want to?

Today 17:11

John

Oh, I see. I remember something about prescriptive and descriptive laws …

Today 17:11  

Julia

Exactly! That’s it. So do the laws of thought tell us something about how the brain is wired,

Today 17:12

Julia

how we should think if we want to think the right way, or are these ideal laws

Today 17:12

John

Ideal laws? 🤨

Today 17:13   

Julia

Not sure what the right expression is here: these would be descriptive laws, but not like natural laws 🤔

Today 17:14

John

Oh, you mean like math and logic, and so on

Today 17:14   

Julia

Yes, we don’t discover them by generalizing from facts, but they are formal, ideal

Today 17:15

John

OK, so now we have different types of laws. We can explain that to the reader, but then what?

Today 17:15   

Julia

Well, there’s a bunch of psychologist, philosophers, and engineers that argued back and forth on this

Today 17:16

Julia

and it seems to matter a lot to whether and how we can put them into a machine.

Today 17:16

John

Right, so can we just build a copy of the brain and then it will automatically follow the same laws, or not?

Today 17:17   

Julia

That is indeed the type of question! But there is more! 😊                

Today 17:18

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Thoughtcrime

Thoughtcrime

Thoughtcrime

Cognition is nothing but computation

Hobbes 1655

Julia and John are talking about the following article:
The Laws of Thought

In this post the dialogue is realised by an interaction of virtual characters, for more information please check the page “Virtual characters

Julia

Hi John, I’m back! 😊                                                                         

Today 17:08

John

Ok, great! What did you find out?😊

Today 17:09   

Julia

On the lowest levels where data comes in and is processed, the material implementation does matter a lot and very directly

Today 17:09

Julia

but on higher levels of abstraction, it matters less, except in a general sense, constraining processing speed and memory size

Today 17:09

John

And what is your conclusion about what to include in the article then?

Today 17:10   

Julia

I think I agree with you that we don’t need to go back all the way to the mythological era

Today 17:11

John

But?

Today 17:11  

Julia

well, I suppose it does make sense to include something about the history of psychology

Today 17:12

John

Aha, and why would that be? 

Today 17:13   

Julia

Both Cho and Sam mentioned “the rules of thinking” and “the laws of thought”, isn’t that what we should be looking at?

Today 17:14

John

Maybe, but the article is about AI, not human psychology …

Today 17:14   

Julia

And yet human intelligence is the only intelligence we really know, more or less

Today 17:15

Julia

So where do we get the “intelligence” part from, if not ourselves?

Today 17:15

John

Hmmm, I see what you mean. So then we need a section on how we discovered our own laws of thought and then put them in a machine?

Today 17:15   

Julia

Exactly! That was what I was getting at! 😅                                  

Today 17:16

John

OK, I do think that makes sense. Then we can’t just talk about computer technology since the 1950s, I guess

Today 17:17   

Julia

No indeed, we should go back at least to the 19th century       

Today 17:18

John

Works for me! But we still have a word limit to observe, so we should be quite selective

Today 17:18 

Julia

I’ll get right on that, no problem! 😉                                              

Today 17:19

John

Thank you so much for your help! 😊

Today 17:20 

… Continue reading our conversations that are posted every Saturday …

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If I do not greatly deceive myself, I have succeeded in realizing… the hundred years’ dream of physicists and physiologists, to wit, the identity of the nervous principle with electricity

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Making IT Count

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Making IT Count

The word “Artificial” is used in one sense when it is applied, say, to flowers, and in another sense when it is applied to light.
In both cases something is called artificial because it is fabricated, but in the first usage artificial means that
the thing seems to be, but really is not, what it looks like.

Sokolowski (1988)
“Natural and Artificial Intelligence” Daedalus 117/1

Julia and Sam are talking about the following article:
Artificial Intelligence

In this post the dialogue is realised by an interaction of virtual characters, for more information please check the page “Virtual characters

Julia

Hi Sam, can I bother you for a minute?

Today 11:36  

Sam

Hi Julia, sure thing! What’s up? 😊                                                           

Today 11:37 

Julia

I’m collaborating with John on a new article on the history of AI

Today 11:38   

Sam

Oh, wow, there’s lots of interesting stuff in there! How can I help?😊                               

Today 11:38  

Julia

My question would be: how much does your body matter to your mind?

Today 11:38   

Sam

Wow! You’d need a philosopher for that, not an engineer! 😊          

Today 11:39  

Julia

Let me rephrase that: how much does the hardware determine the software? 😉

Today 11:40  

Sam

Oh, right! Yeah, if you put it that way … Quite a bit actually!😊         

Today 11:40  

Sam

I don’t know about the mind in general, and the “laws of thought”,   

Today 11:41  

Sam

but a computer is definitely conditioned by its basic architecture    

Today 11:41  

Sam

say, whether it can process things only serially, one after another, or in parallel, etc.

Today 11:42  

Julia

I guess the constraints can be found mostly at the lowest levels?

Today 11:43   

Sam

Yes, where hardware and software meet, in a sense, where the 1 and 0 of math become electromagnetic charges and streams

Today 11:44  

Julia

OK, but at higher levels you can do the same algorithm on different machines?

Today 11:45   

Sam

Absolutely! Most computers implement the same kind of high level, abstract programming languages

Today 11:45  

Julia

And whatever we call “AI” mostly happens there, so isn’t constrained much by the hardware?

Today 11:46   

Sam

Well, most of the differences you’ll see between human intelligence and AI actually does boil down to implementation

Today 11:46  

Sam

how the various bits and pieces communicate, the size and speed of memory, etc.

Today 11:46  

Julia

last question: why do we call it “artificial” if it just works like human intelligence? 😅

Today 11:47

Sam

Perhaps we shouldn’t! But I guess it mostly means “made with tools” instead of “fake”. Some prefer to speak of “machine intelligence

Today 11:47  

Julia

OK, this has been most helpful! 😊

Today 11:48 

Sam

Happy to hear it! 😊Let me know how it turns out!                             

Today 11:48  

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Natural Born Computers

Natural Born Computers

Natural Born Computers

You who calculate! …
Why not use Brains of Steel which never tire?

(Brunsviga ad, 1909)

Julia and Cho are talking about the following article:
BRUNSVIGA

In this post the dialogue is realised by an interaction of virtual characters, for more information please check the page “Virtual characters

Julia

Hi Cho! Sorry to bother you …

Today 11:36  

Cho

Hi Julia! Never a bother! How can I help you?  😊                                

Today 11:37

Julia

I was asked to contribute to another article for John’s magazine

Today 11:38   

Julia

It is about the history of AI? And we have some questions …

Today 11:38   

Cho

Sure, but AI isn’t really my thing, as you know  😅                               

Today 11:39  

Julia

Oh, yes I do know! But you do have a background in psychology, right? 😉

Today 11:40  

Cho

That’s right, cognitive psychology 😊                                                     

Today 11:41 

Julia

So, early AI was inspired by how humans think and what they think with

Today 11:42   

Julia

do you think we need to include something about the history of neuropsychology?

Today 11:42   

Cho

Like, how did we discover the rules of thinking in the brain?             

Today 11:43   

Julia

Exactly! 😊

Today 11:44   

Cho

Ah, now I see what you’re getting at. Well, maybe  🤔                        

Today 11:45   

Julia

Maybe? 🤔

Today 11:46

Cho

It depends a bit on what you mean by “intelligence”                         

Today 11:47   

Cho

If you mean human level general intelligence, then I’m not sure the history brain science is going to help

Today 11:48   

Cho

But if you also mean, basic pre-processing of information in the sense-organs, then probably yes!

Today 11:48   

Cho

Also, you might need to ask someone like Sam about the “artificial part

Today 11:49   

Cho

If it works like human intelligence, why do we call it artificial?           

Today 11:49   

Julia

Thank you for the clarification, Sam was indeed my next stop, and then I’ll get back to John.

Today 11:50 

Cho

Good luck with your article!                                                                      

Today 11:51   

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