Mind Matters Natural and Artificial Intelligence News and Analysis

# ArchiveArticles

## What Students Lose by Embracing Easy Tech Like ChatGPT

AI systems not only pose a problem for teachers, but will compromise intellectual excellence and moral virtue

We’ve heard a lot about ChatGPT and its wonders and gaping pitfalls. Among the dangers it poses is academic cheating and corner-cutting. It’s no secret that the new bot makes Comp 1 a whole lot easier for a typical incoming freshman. Some universities and schools are banning the AI system outright. Teachers wonder how they will be able to discern plagiarism. Other voices chide the alarmists and call for students and teachers to use ChatGPT as a classroom aid.   But one area that has gone a bit underdiscussed in the conversation is ethics. Dr. Anthony Bradley of The King’s College tweeted this a few days ago, Students are writing papers using AI. Colleges are scrambling to combat it. We Read More ›

## Large Language Models Can Entertain but Are They Useful?

Humans who value correct responses will need to fact-check everything LLMs generate

In 1987 economics Nobel Laureate Robert Solow said that the computer age was everywhere—except in productivity data. A similar thing could be said about AI today: It dominates tech news but does not seem to have boosted productivity a whit. In fact, productivity growth has been declining since Solow’s observation. Productivity increased by an average of 2.7% a year from 1948 to 1986, by less than 2% a year from 1987 to 2022. Labor productivity is the amount of goods and services we produce in a given amount of time—output per hour. More productive workers can build more cars, construct more houses, and educate more children. More productive workers can also enjoy more free time. If workers can do in four Read More ›

## Found! ChatGPT’s Humans in the Loop!

I am the only writer I’ve been able to discover who is suggesting ChatGPT has humans in the loop. Here is a series of telling excerpts from our last conversation…

## How Surreal Artist MC Escher Influenced Physicist Roger Penrose

Escher’s mathematical art was all the more remarkable because he had no formal training in mathematics

Last month, Robert Lawrence Kuhn interviewed eminent British mathematical physicist Sir Roger Penrose on a number of topics, including the influence of surrealist artist M. C. Escher (December 9, 2022/32:00 min). Here is a transcribed selection from the second part of the discussion in Part 1 above*, beginning around the 12-minute mark, with some notes: Robert Lawrence Kuhn: We talked about the impossible Penrose triangle which really opens up another area of your life in terms of visual representations of remarkable things. Penrose tiling really new ways of thing of seeing visual representation of fiery fundamental geometric and algebraic transformations and things. But what I wanted to ask you is, as youdeveloped that you had this interaction with the artist Read More ›

## How Do Strokes, Dementia Offer Insight Into How the Brain Works?

Neurologist Andrew Knox thinks the brain may store memories is an associative scheme, where previous memories are used to build up new ones

In the podcast released last Thursday, Walter Bradley Center director Robert J. Marks interviewed pediatric neurologist Dr. Andrew Knox from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health on “Ways the brain can break” (#220, January 5, 2023). What follows is from Part 3 of the discussion. Here’s Part 1: How our brains are — and aren’t — like computers and Part 2: What is happening when children have strokes or dementia signs? https://mindmatters.ai/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2022/12/Mind-Matters-220-Andrew-Knox-Episode-1.mp3 This portion begins at roughly 18:25 min. A partial transcript and notes, and Additional Resources follow. The discussion began with the question, “How does the brain store memories?” Andrew Knox: There are different schemes for storing memories, but patients with Alzheimer’s seem to have Read More ›

## Do Cave Paintings From 20,000 Years Ago Show Symbolic Writing?

In an article in the Cambridge Archeological Journal, researchers say they’ve deciphered the dots and Y’s among the animal paintings

London-based wood carving conservator Ben Bacon has, with academic colleagues, shaken up Ice Age paleontology by demonstrating that the marks on the 20,000-year-old cave paintings of animals found across Europe could be interpreted as a lunar calendar timing their reproductive cycles: Prof Paul Pettitt, of Durham University, said he was “glad he took it seriously” when Mr Bacon contacted him. “The results show that Ice Age hunter-gatherers were the first to use a systemic calendar and marks to record information about major ecological events within that calendar.” News, “Londoner solves 20,000-year Ice Age drawings mystery” at BBC (January 5, 2023) The paper is open access. Bacon had spent many hours both on the internet and in the British Library, studying Read More ›