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Re: [ontolog-forum] History of AI and Commercial Data Processing

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Steve Newcomb <srn@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 23 Jun 2009 17:39:44 -0400
Message-id: <4A414BA0.4080208@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
John F. Sowa wrote:
>> AI is dominated by brilliant people who are totally out of touch
>> with anything and everything that goes on in the field of commercial
>> data processing.  There is no question that many of their ideas
>> could, if properly implemented, revolutionize commercial systems.
This is a serious problem, but it is only one symptom of a deadlier 
malaise. From a Darwinian perspective, intelligence is selected-for 
because it enables rapid adaptation to reality. (In military terms, it 
allows shorter, more effective OODA loops.) However, the purpose of 
American military intelligence -- the de facto employer of the dominant 
people in AI -- has in recent decades become the control of the 
*perception* of reality. That can work for a while, just as denial can 
work for a while in dealing with some psychological crises. In the end, 
though, the principle of "Adapt or Die" is inexorable. If your OODA 
loops keep taking you in the wrong directions, you lose.    (01)

I note the calamitous conclusion of the Valerie Plame-Wilson case at the 
Supreme Court's doorstep. If there's anything in the American immune 
system capable of reversing the course of this particular disease of its 
Central Nervous System (CNS), it remains to be seen. Bill Casey, among 
others, apparently didn't bother to read the manual for America's CNS, 
or maybe he just didn't believe it, or maybe he just had other 
priorities than ministering to the health of the American republic.    (02)

I'm asking my IC friends to consider how central the truth is to their 
motivations, and to the realities of their workplaces. I don't want to 
know their thoughts about these things; I just want them to reflect on 
whether and how they are serving their country's best interests. It's no 
more or less than I cringe to ask myself.    (03)

Steve Newcomb    (04)

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