All posts tagged: Sentience

skeptic society Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence

You probably heard the news: a supercomputer has become sentient and has passed the Turing test (i.e., has managed to fool a human being into thinking he was talking to another human being)! Surely the Singularity is around the corner and humanity is either doomed or will soon become god-like. Except, of course, that little of the above is true, and it matters even less. First, let’s get the facts straight: what actually happened was that a chatterbot (i.e., a computer script), not a computer, has passed the Turing test at a competition organized at the Royal Society in London. Second, there is no reason whatsoever to think that the chatterbot in question, named “Eugene Goostman” and designed by Vladimir Veselov, is sentient, or even particularly intelligent. It’s little more than a (clever) parlor trick. Third, this was actually the second time that a chatterbot passed the Turing test, the other one was Cleverbot, back in 2011. Fourth, Eugene only squeaked by, technically convincing “at least 30% of the judges” (a pretty low bar) for …