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Re: [ontolog-forum] IBM Watson's Final Jeopardy error "explanation"

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Obrst, Leo J." <lobrst@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2011 17:21:51 -0500
Message-id: <0111C34BD897FD41841D60396F2AD3D307A7F559F6@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Yes, there is no intelligence in Watson. It's truly just an advanced tool, but 
also a great human technical accomplishment. I was "amen-ing" John's recitation 
of the accomplishments of the field of AI, which to me has contributed greatly 
to computer science and information technology, not necessarily to the 
development of an AI. I think an AI, if one should arise, will be a lot like a 
human, and not be able to do chess, question-answering, go, etc., any better 
than a human does. We'd give it human rights, but we wouldn't necessarily hire 
it for a particular job.*    (01)

I don't aspire technically to create an AI. Instead, I think we need to move 
the machine upward to human conceptualizations, human capabilities, simply to 
increase humans' utilization of information technology. Then humans can get a 
lot more work done and more efficiently, by harnessing our software and 
computing environments in much better fashion. That's my engineering goal as a 
computer scientist.     (02)

My scientific goal is mostly focused on trying to develop better theories, 
ontologies, and formalisms that can be leveraged to do the engineering goal 
better, and of course to get closer to how humans and machines are, how they do 
what they do, how they refer to the world, and what that world consists of. So, 
to me, the best ontologies are like scientific theories, and one might say they 
represent those theories. So of course we humans and our machines should use 
those. However, there are many other theories (ontologies) which are currently 
only commonsense (nave) theories which are still very valuable because they 
capture how we do and mean things. You may not have a good scientific theory of 
familial relations or organizational structure or agent 
cooperation/coordination or restaurant dining or electronic commerce for a very 
long time, if ever. But that doesn't mean such a theory is not very useful for 
us and our software.    (03)

Thanks,
Leo    (04)

 
*My one caveat is that an initial AI might be like this, i.e., like a human 
being, and prone to all the human frailties except perhaps biological 
embodiment. But probably that AI will be like us and aspire higher, i.e., 
eventually attempt to develop higher level AIs, like we want to do too (we also 
want to enhance humans). Now you begin to get into science fiction. And then I 
think of Stanislaw Lem's Imaginary Magnitude story collection, and Golem's 
descendents.     (05)

-----Original Message-----
From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
[mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Patrick Durusau
Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2011 3:55 PM
To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] IBM Watson's Final Jeopardy error "explanation"    (06)

Leo,    (07)

I don't question any of the statements that John has made.    (08)

The problem is equating those achievements, which are considerable, with 
intelligence.    (09)

Despite the achievement with Watson, it could not cross the street 
unassisted.    (010)

Not very "intelligent" at all.    (011)

Why can't we applaud the considerable technical achievement as a tool?    (012)

Like a back-hoe or locomotive? But just a tool, nothing more.    (013)

Hope you are having a great day!    (014)

Patrick    (015)

On 2/17/2011 3:16 PM, Obrst, Leo J. wrote:
> Amen, John! I quite agree with you.
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
>[mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of John F. Sowa
> Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2011 1:37 PM
> To: ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] IBM Watson's Final Jeopardy error "explanation"
>
> Peter and Krzysztof,
>
> PB
>> "artificial intelligence" is neither.
> That's a quibble about a name.  Many people, including me, have stated
> such quibbles from time to time, but they're irrelevant.  They're as
> pointless as the behaviorists who objected to the name 'psychology'
> because it implies an unobservable psyche.
>
> John McCarthy coined the term 'artificial intelligence'.  He also
> designed LISP, and he was the primary advocate of logic-based
> techniques in AI, which spilled over into every other area of
> computer science.  He also published some papers about philosophical
> issues in AI, which stimulated much of the R&  D that led to our
> current work on formal ontology.
>
> PB
>> I seriously worry that such a failed dismal experiment of the
>> last century...
> The amount of high quality research done under the name of AI
> has been enormous, and it has been so thoroughly integrated into
> the foundations of computer science that its AI origins have often
> been forgotten:
>
>    1. Just look at LISP, which contributed the if-then-else statement,
>       recursion, lambda expressions, metalanguage, garbage collection,
>       the ability to write an interpreter or compiler of a language
>       in itself, etc.  (McCarthy, by the way, was also a member of
>       the IFIP committee that designed Algol, so his influence was
>       very direct.)
>
>    2. Java is basically LISP + CLOS (Common Lisp Object System)
>       written in a syntax based on C.  But the AI community had
>       30 years of experience in using and extending that technology.
>       Sun (which designed Java) was founded by former Stanford
>       students who learned LISP and AI from McCarthy and others
>       and who built their company by selling workstations for AI.
>
>    3. Most of the technology for logic-based systems, theorem provers,
>       formal languages, parsers, etc., was either pioneered in AI
>       or applied and extended in AI projects.
>
>    4. People like Ted Codd, who founded the relational DB community,
>       were strongly influenced by AI.  Codd wrote his PhD dissertation
>       on cellular automata and participated in joint projects on AI
>       related issues.  Among them was his RENDEZVOUS system for
>       an English query language for RDBs (and, by the way, Codd's
>       group used a parser that I wrote for their front end).
>
> PB
>> [AI] now re-emerges with respectable "semantic web" clothing.
> Please note that the Semantic Web is just a tiny subset of AI
> technology, and the primary developers came from the AI community.
>
> The person who developed RDF was Ramanathan Guha, who wrote his
> PhD dissertation at Stanford with McCarthy as his supervisor.
> While he was finishing his PhD, he worked on Cyc and became
> the associate director of Cyc.  He later went to Apple, where
> he developed the Meta Content Framework (MCF).  He then went
> to Netscape, where he worked with Tim Bray to rewrite MCF in
> XML to form RDF.
>
> Guha later collaborated with Pat Hayes and others (also from
> the AI community) to define the semantic foundations for RDF
> and OWL.  (Just check Google for "Guha Hayes RDF" and
> "Guha Hayes OWL" to find the W3C documents.)  And OWL began
> as a combination of two AI projects, DAML + OIL, and was
> further enhanced by people from the AI community.
>
> KJ
>> Watson is a question answering machine and a very good one. Maybe one
>> day they will deploy it on your mobile phone with a Internet connection
>> to the processing and storage unit in the cloud similar to the Wolfram
>> Alpha App. Watson is not intelligent in the sense that it does not
>> understand the answers or questions but it turns out that in many cases
>> this is not necessary. I think that as a research domain we should be
>> rather happy that Watson won and congratulate IBM -- it is a strong
>> showcase for our work.
> I strongly agree.  The people who worked on Watson had a strong
> foundation in both AI and comp. sci.  It is a respectable piece
> of research.
>
> Anybody who doubts these points should do some remedial studies
> in the history of AI and computer science.
>
> John
>
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>    (016)

-- 
Patrick Durusau
patrick@xxxxxxxxxxx
Chair, V1 - US TAG to JTC 1/SC 34
Convener, JTC 1/SC 34/WG 3 (Topic Maps)
Editor, OpenDocument Format TC (OASIS), Project Editor ISO/IEC 26300
Co-Editor, ISO/IEC 13250-1, 13250-5 (Topic Maps)    (017)

Another Word For It (blog): http://tm.durusau.net
Homepage: http://www.durusau.net
Twitter: patrickDurusau    (018)


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