Re[2]: Preventing AI Breakout [was Genetics, nannotechnology, and ,programming]

Matt Gingell (
Mon, 25 Oct 1999 10:34:38 -0400

> Ah, but bottom-up AI (which is what we are talking about!) involves
> a process of "scrambling" the code and selecting the best results.
> Now, we as humans are slowly decoding the code and while we may
> never have a perfect picture (because many of the steps are "lost")
> we *will* be able to have a highly probable set of mutations, chromosome
> translocations, etc. that lead to the rise of all existing species.

Perhaps this is a quibble, but I want to point out that 'bottom up' doesn't in any way imply 'genetic' or 'evolution'. These are totally distinct concepts.

The difference between top down and bottom up is what guides the manipulation of partial solutions/explorations. In bottom up approaches you explore locally without thinking about where specifically you're going, whereas in top-down approaches you're guided by the target solution.

Imagine trying to put together a jigsaw puzzle. A top down approach would be to look at a piece and the picture you're trying to build, then decide where that piece should go. A bottom up approach would be to start grabbing pairs of pieces at random and seeing if they fit together, slowly building up bigger and bigger chunks until you reach your halt state.

Clearly we do both. There's no question that the mind utilizes both strategies.