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Teachable moments in AI

A truism from early computing was that computers can only do what they are programmed to do. It’s hackneyed, but today this limitation is more important than ever. Starkly, no artificial narrow intelligence can learn from its experience.

Remember the chatbot Tay - an AI experiment of Microsoft's, which was intended to learn from real people by participating in Twitter but which had to be shutdown after it went feral. Imagine Tay was a real child: her parents would have sat her down and explained how what she had been saying was wrong.

It is no trivial point that we don’t simply turn off an anti-social infant, but instead we expect them to grow from their missteps. In contrast, AI has no teachable moments. Real intelligence can’t be all artificial.

Posted in AI