Re: The most powerful approach to AI ever discovered?

From: J. R. Molloy (
Date: Mon Dec 17 2001 - 04:48:03 MST

From: "Harvey Newstrom" <>
> If they really had this discovery, they would make more
> money using the technology. Why sell it to competitors for $50K a pop?

That's like saying "if IBM really had a supercomputer, they would make more
money using the technology; why sell it to competitors?"
The answer is: The more computers are in use, the more valuable the technology
becomes. Likewise, if only one human is literate, literature is not of much
use. But when many people are literate, then the worth of literature is
amplified proportionately.

According to the news story:
"He predicted that applications developed for the brain OS will be able to
instill genuine machine intelligence into next-generation "conversational"
applications such as talking automatic teller machines or fully automatic
customer-service "personalities" that outperform even a knowledgeable human
being in answering ad hoc queries. HNC said it will assist participating
engineers in creating their own AI applications during the technology course."

What makes it hype is that "he predicted," etc., because if an expert system
is capable of building a more expert system, then the economic principle of
distribution no longer applies... instead of a goose that lays golden eggs, it
has become a goose that lays eggs that hatch into geese that lay mega-golden
eggs, that hatch into geese that lay... a phase transition in intelligence,
aka singularity. So, if a corporation owns the patent on such devices, it will
make Microsoft look like a Mom and Pop kitchen table enterprise.

"When you can buy intelligence, alliances are more important than ability."
--Kim Cosmos

...and has there ever been a time when intelligence could not be bought?

--- --- --- --- ---

Useless hypotheses, etc.:
 consciousness, phlogiston, philosophy, vitalism, mind, free will, qualia,
analog computing, cultural relativism, GAC, Cyc, Eliza, cryonics, individual
uniqueness, ego, human values, scientific relinquishment, malevolent AI,
non-sensory experience, SETI

We move into a better future in proportion as science displaces superstition.

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