Introduction to Artificial Intelligence

What is “Intelligence”?

  • "Intelligence denotes the ability of an individual to adapt his thinking to new demands; it is the common mental adaptability to new tasks and conditions of life" (William Stern, 1912)

  • Being "intelligent" means to be able to cognitively grasp phenomena, being able to judge, to trade of between different possibilities, or to be able to learn.

  • An important aspect of "Intelligence" is the way and efficiency how humans are able to adapt to their environment or assimilate their environment for solving problems.

  • Intelligence manifests itself in logical thinking, computations, the memory capabilities of the brain, through the application of words and language rules or through the recognition of things and events.

  • The combination of information, creativity, and new problem solutions is crucial for acting "intelligent".

Testing “Intelligence” with the Turing Test

  • Turing test is a proposal to test a machine’s ability to demonstrate “intelligence”

Testing “Intelligence” with the Turing Test (1)

  • Turing test proceeds as follows:

    • A human judge C engages in a natural language conversation with one human B and one machine A , each of which tries to appear human.

    • All participants are placed in isolated locations.

    • If the judge C cannot reliably tell the machine A from the human B , the machine is said to have passed the test.

    • In order to test the machine's intelligence rather than its ability to render words into audio, the conversation is limited to a text-only channel such as a computer keyboard or screen

  • Turing test is an operational test for intelligent behaviour. For more details see [2].

“Chinese Room”

  • The “Chinese room” experiment developed by John Searle in 1980 attempts to show that a symbol-processing machine like a computer can never be properly described as having a ”mind” or “understanding”, regardless of how intelligently it may behave.

  • With the “Chinese room” John Searle argues that it is possible to pass the Turing Test, yet not (really) think.

  • Source:

“Chinese Room” (1)

  • The “Chinese room” experiment proceeds as follows:

    • Searle, a human, who does not knows Chinese, is locked in a room with an enormous batch of Chinese script.

    • Slips of paper with still more Chinese script come through a slot in the wall.

    • Searle has been given a set of rules in English for correlating the Chinese script coming through with the batches of script already in the room.

“Chinese Room” (2)

    • Searle is instructed to push back through the slot the Chinese script with which the scripts coming in through the slot are correlated according to the rules.

    • Searle identifies the scripts coming in and going out on the basis of their shapes alone. He does not speak Chinese, he does not understand them

    • The scripts going in are called ‘the questions’, the scripts coming out are ‘the answers’, and the rules that Searle follows is ‘the program’.

    • Suppose also that the set of rules, the program is so good and Searle gets so good at following it that Searle’s answers are indistinguishable from those of a native Chinese speaker.

“Chinese Room” (3)

  • The result:

    • It seems clear that Searle nevertheless does not understand the questions or the answers

    • But Searle is behaving just a computer does, “performing computational operations on formally specified elements”

  • Hence, manipulating formal symbols, which is just what a computer running a program does, is not sufficient for understanding or thinking

What is “Artificial Intelligence”?

  • Many definitions exist, among them:

    • “The study of the computations that make it possible to perceive, reason, and act” (Winston, 1992)

    • “A field of study that seeks to explain and emulate [human] intelligent behaviour in terms of computational processes” (Schalkoff, 1990)

  • It is an interdisciplinary field that is based on results from philosphy, psychology, linguistics, or brain sciences

  • Difference to “traditional” computer science: Emphasis on cognition, reasoning, and acting

  • Generative theory of intelligence:

    • Intelligence emerges from the orchestration of multiple processes

    • Process models of intelligent behaviour can be investigated and simulated on machines

Early developments of Artificial Intelligence

  • Two main aspects begin to manifest in the early days of AI

  1. Cognitive modelling, i.e., the simulation of cognitive processes through information processing models

  2. The construction of “intelligent systems” that make certain aspects of human cognition and reasoning available.

Strong AI vs. Weak AI

  • Strong AI
    • “An artificial intelligence system can think and have a mind . “ (John Searle 1986)
    • “Machine intelligence with the full range of human intelligence” (Kurzweil 2005)
    • Ai that matches or exceeds human intelligence.
    • Intelligence can be reduced to information processing.
    • “Science Fiction AI”
  • Weak AI
    • Intelligence can partially be mapped to computational processes.
    • Intelligence is information processing
    • Intelligence can be simulated