AI Hacks Are Trying to Turn Code into Intelligence Like Alchemists Tried Turning Lead into Gold

October 2, 2017

(Quartz) – For more than a century, alchemists tried to graft the attributes of gold—yellow, fusible, inert, malleable—onto a single substance. Modern AI advocates are doing just the same, taking the attributes of “intelligence”—raw computational power, recognizing faces, mapping spaces, processing language, spotting patterns—and hoping that if we smush them together in a very powerful computer, somehow it will magically add up to what we call “intelligence.” But you can’t make gold from lead. And you can’t make intelligence from code.

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