Mind Matters Natural and Artificial Intelligence News and Analysis

TagArtificial Intelligence

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Builders in work clothes install new roofing tools, roofing tools, electric drill and use them on new wooden roofs with metal sheets

The One Thing Only Humans Can Do

What makes human beings unique? Will artificial intelligence take over our jobs?

What makes human beings unique? Will artificial intelligence take over our jobs? The Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence, which publishes Mind Matters, was launched largely to respond to questions like these. In a panel discussion at the Dallas launch of the Bradley Center, Baylor Professor of Computer Engineering Robert J. Marks offered some thoughts on the evening’s topic, “Will ‘Smart’ Machines Take Over Our Jobs?” This is a great video to watch if you’re new to Mind Matters or are interested in learning more about the unique perspective of the Bradley Center. Marks doesn’t offer doomsday approximations of the future of AI, but neither does he disregard the challenges it poses. According to him, though, there’s one Read More ›

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AI related law concept shown by robot hand using lawyer working tools in lawyers office with legal astute icons depicting artificial intelligence law . GEnerative IA

Can Lawyer Robots Solve Complex Legal Cases?

A lawyer recently used ChatGPT in a court case, but it generated false citations. Can AI be trusted at all in the courtroom? Lawyer Richard Stevens explains how in legal cases, meaning, context, and nuance are essential, and can’t be “computed” by artificial intelligence.  Additional Resources

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The robot guard on the dark garbage dump: A surreal 3D scenery

AI Could Take Us Over, But Not In the Way You Might Expect

Revisiting last year's article from tech critic Andrew McDiarmid

As I reported last year, there’s been a lot of talk about a singularity in the last decade. That’s the point when machine intelligence (AI) exceeds human intelligence and begins to rule humanity and eventually the entire universe. It’s a scary proposition to be sure, but we can rest easy on that front, because it’s not going to happen. The futurists assume there’s a bridge between narrow applications of AI and the general intelligence humans possess. But no such bridge exists. As Erik J. Larson explains in his book The Myth of Artificial Intelligence, we’re not even on the right road to such a bridge. You can also take George Gilder’s word for it. One of the most influential thinkers on technology and economics Read More ›

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Beautiful Single white cloud isolated over black background

A Cloud of Converging Technologies

We are entering the roaring 2020s, technologically speaking

We are on the cusp of a Roaring 2020s. Mark Mills, author of The Cloud Revolution: How the Convergence of New Technologies Will Unleash the Next Economic Boom and a Roaring 2020s, proposes that the convergence of revolutions in three technology spheres is unleashing the next great economic boom: the means for accessing and propagating information, the machines that represent the means of production, and the materials domain from which we fabricate everything that exists. Watch him explain and defend his ideas in this informative lecture from the 2022 COSM Conference. We’ve been sharing a number of lectures from past COSM conferences. This video is just one of many you can find at the Bradley Center’s YouTube page. There you’ll find Read More ›

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Face of female robot, Artificial intelligence concept. Generative AI

Dystopia, Utopia, or Somewhere in Between?

Two great minds on the future of "smart machines"

We’ve been featuring several videos from last year’s jam-packed COSM conference, which featured celebrated speakers like Kyoto Prize winner Carver Mead, venture capitalist Peter Thiel, and a number of other highly influential voices in technology and science. Today, however, we’re sharing a video from the archives of Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture on the future of “smart machines,” including the dawn of sex robots. The video features a conversation between Discovery Institute’s Jay Richards and Michael Medved, who is a Senior Fellow with Discovery Insitute’s Center for Wealth & Poverty and a renowned radio broadcaster. Their discussion is remarkably pertinent to both the benefits and challenges raised by artificial intelligence and the future of “smart technology.” You can Read More ›

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person talking with robotic ai.futuristic technology or machine learning concepts.Generative ai technology

AI Libel and Responsibility 

What happens when ChatGPT doesn’t just generate false information but also slanderous and potentially harmful responses? And in legal matters, who is responsible for AI? Robert J. Marks and legal expert Richard W. Stevens discuss these topics and more in this week’s podcast episode. Additional Resources

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Big data analytics visualization technology with scientist analyzing information structure on screen with machine learning to extract strategical prediction for business, finance, internet of things

Review of Distrust: Big Data, Data-Torturing, and the Assault on Science

Tech expert Jeffrey Funk reviews Gary Smith's enlightening new book on data, disinformation, and the "assault on science"

The pandemic proved a lot of things, one of them being that science is under assault. In this enlightening and entertaining new book, Professor Gary Smith shows us how much of the assault has its roots in what scientists do. The easiest impact to understand is the Internet, which was originally created by scientists in the 1970s to exchange scientific information. Now it has become a great way to spread disinformation on almost every subject. A former chief historian of NASA noted that: “The reality is, the internet has made it possible for people to say whatever the hell they like to a broader number of people than ever before.” Smith recounts endless examples of this disinformation, much of which Read More ›

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Closeup of Ben Franklin on a one hundred dollar bill for background IV

Life After Capitalism: Human Creativity Drives Economic Growth

Gilder once more rocks the archetypes of modern information theory and economics with a paradigm-shifting salvo of sheer brilliance

Author of national bestseller Life After Google and generation-defining Wealth and Poverty, venture capitalist, futurist, and pioneering thinker extraordinaire George Gilder pinpoints how the clash of creativity with power at the heart of economic systems leads to global cognitive dissonance and argues that the creation of the novel taps capitalism’s infinite promise and is humanity’s only path of escape from stagnation and tyranny. Gilder once more rocks the archetypes of modern information theory and economics with a paradigm-shifting salvo of sheer brilliance. The capitalist era is over — get ready for life after capitalism. For more than two hundred years, capitalism spread wealth around the globe, bringing unprecedented prosperity and progress, liberating human potential. But something has gone terribly wrong in the world economy. Read More ›

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No AI Artificial Intelligence Forbidden Sign Lawsuit Copyright

Supreme Court Ruling Strikes a Blow to “Generative AI”

Ouch. That's a big loss for AI. Here's why:

Can generative AI “think outside the box” even as it draws from preexisting material on the internet? Are the images it produces protected under “fair use”? The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) has decided “no.” AI fails to be “transformative,” meaning it can’t create new meaning apart from its source material. Robert J. Marks reported on the recent lawsuit Warhol v. Goldsmith, writing, Assume AI is trained with all of the musical compositions of Bach. If the AI generates music that sounds like Bach, it is not transformative. The “meaning or message” can be construed as being the same. It’s still like Bach. On the other hand, if the AI is trained only on Bach but generates music Read More ›

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Patented intellectual property right management concept patent button on virtual screen.

AI and Intellectual Property 

The question of copyright and “fair use” is a contentious debate in the age of AI. Is AI-generated art a kind of theft? What about artists’ rights? Attorney and Bradley Center Senior Fellow Richard Stevens discusses the legalities of copyright and the challenge of artificial intelligence in today’s increasingly complicated world.  Additional Resources

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VR virtual reality headset goggles worn by man 3D illustration with colorful abstract art showing creativity, fun, metaverse and more, with a white background.

Apple’s Vision Pro Promises “Augmented Reality”

The goal? To seamlessly blend digital and physical space

We’ve written here several times on Meta‘s struggling metaverse project; Zuckerberg‘s darling endeavor hasn’t gotten the traction he hoped for, with teetering investor involvement and an even more fragile consumer interest. But that didn’t stop Apple from chasing their own augmented reality project. The tech giant recently announced the Vision Pro, a headset that allows users to see apps and messages within their physical space. The product is a major development, and the main goal, according to Apple CEO Tim Cook, is to dissolve the boundaries between our physical and digital dimensions. Per a report from ABC News, “Vision Pro is a new kind of computer that augments reality by seamlessly blending the real world with the digital world,” Apple Read More ›

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AI robot tutor reading with a teenage boy

The End of the Search Engine?

Bill Gates thinks AI will someday replace traditional search engines

Bill Gates thinks AI will destroy search engines. In the wake of artificial assistants, searching the “traditional” way will get thrown out as the internet totally transforms; nonetheless, it might take a while for AI to fully replace search engines like Google or Microsoft’s Bing. Until then, tech companies will keep trying to implement GPT-like systems into their search systems. Microsoft is already aggressively pushing for this. When you search for something through Microsoft Edge, the chatbot’s response is the first thing to pop up. Victor Tangermann reports at Futurism, Gates has been bullish on the topic of AI for a while now. Just last month, he told an audience during a keynote speech that AI could eventually teach kids how Read More ›

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robot  take over solarized image

Not to Worry–AI Isn’t Going to Take Over

AI hype isn't new. Here's Robert J. Marks writing on the topic in 2017

[The AI hype isn’t new. The history of exaggerating its potential goes back decades. In this article, Robert J. Marks echoes many of the views covered in more detail in his 2022 book Non-Computable You: What You Do That Artificial Intelligence Never Will. Today we share it with you, originally written on October 3rd, 2017, and published at The Stream.] A.I. is transforming our world. Should we worry about that? Entrepreneur billionaire Elon Musk is worried. Woody Allen once said, “What if everything is an illusion and nothing exists? In that case, I definitely overpaid for my carpet.” Musk thinks he overpaid for his carpet. He believes there’s a good chance the world as we know it is a sophisticated Read More ›

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An analyst uses a computer and dashboard for data business analysis and Data Management System with KPI and metrics connected to the database for technology finance, operations, sales, marketing

What Even Is Artificial Intelligence?

When we talk about AI, we're basically talking about computers

In a recent Mind Matters podcast, computer engineer Robert J. Marks puts the AI hype into perspective by investigating what it can and cannot do. Marks is of the mind that AI can offer a myriad of benefits to the modern world, and notes that the technology has already made inroads into various spheres of life including banking, accounting, and facial recognition technology. The danger lies in believing that AI can replicate human creativity and understanding. While AI can do a lot, it can never understand itself the way human beings can. Marks thinks this is essential to keep in mind. We are not machines. Here is a quote from the episode in which Marks sets some terms and definitions: Read More ›

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Close up on drop splash of a healthy extra-virgin oil full of oligo elements and vitamins creating circular waves by falling down on the liquid and seamless pure surface shining with golden reflects.

Synthetic Biology: What New Therapies Are in Store?

For today's featured video from COSM 2022, watch Babak Parviz, Vice President at Amazon, lead a discussion on synthetic biology

For today’s featured video from COSM 2022, watch Babak Parviz, Vice President at Amazon, lead a discussion on synthetic biology, the multi-disciplinary field that applies engineering principles to redesign biological systems for new purposes. The panel focuses on bio-medical technologies that hold great promise for curing diseases and even counteracting human aging. For more material on the topic, see this piece on Altos Labs and their work on bio-longevity. Part of their project also involves artificial intelligence research: Altos Labs’ vision isn’t too far removed from that of the transhumanists who want to computerize human consciousness. For them, however, longevity is a junior varsity goal — what we really need is a way to live forever. Harrison quips at the Read More ›

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Catch the star. A person is standing next to the Milky Way galaxy pointing on a bright star.

A Return to the Reality of the Soul

Materialism has depersonalized the universe, but the evidence for the soul remains

Contemporary Western culture is disillusioned. Under the mainstream narrative of materialism, moderns struggle to connect their lives with a transcendent meaning beyond the self. In the United States, we enjoy a level of privilege and wealth foreign to the majority of prior generations, and yet we see “deaths of despair,” frightening rates of anxiety and depression, and heightened political tensions. None of this is news to you, I’m guessing. I’ve personally written a variation of that paragraph in other articles a number of times. The question behind our collective disillusionment is, frankly, why? Why do we struggle to make something of our lives? Why do we enjoy technological and scientific progress but lack the moral and cultural means to enjoy Read More ›

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Empty vintage congress hall with seats and microphones

“A Printing Press Moment” in History

AI should be regulated lest it do real harm in the world, said OpenAI CEO

Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, the company at the forefront of artificial intelligence development in recent months, testified before lawmakers last week on the state of AI, its potential, and the dangers of its misuse. Despite Altman’s overall optimism regarding AI, calling it a “printing press moment,” he called for lawmakers to regulate it to keep it from causing legitimate harm in the world. Julia Zorthian, writer at Times and owner of the coolest last name in the world, reports, Joining Altman in testifying before the committee were two other AI experts, professor of Psychology and Neural Science at New York University Gary Marcus and IBM Chief Privacy & Trust Officer Christina Montgomery. The three witnesses supported governance of AI Read More ›

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Light bulb Global Internet connection. Business global internet connection application technology and digital marketing, Financial and banking, Digital link tech, big data,  bulb, light, energy, lamp,

Review of “Power and Progress: Our Thousand-Year Struggle Over Technology and Prosperity”

This new book on tech, AI, and economic prosperity by Daron Acemoglu and Simon Johnson is incredibly timely

This book by two MIT economists is very timely because the world is now dealing with the latest in the “Thousand Year Struggle,” in the form of artificial intelligence, the claims that many white-collar jobs will be automated, OpenAI’s call for regulation, and the possibility that AI will bring a further concentration of power among the big tech companies. Much of the book sets the stage for this discussion by summarizing the history of technology. This review focuses on the economic and social impact of automation and information technology over the last 50 years. For instance, “the distribution of income between capital and labor began to change significantly in the late 20th century. While throughout most of the century, about Read More ›

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Adult student reading a book in the college library. Young standing male wearing glasses with bookshelves on background.

In the Wake of AI Books, What Does Authorship Mean?

While of course it's easy to use AI to generate text, the quality and storytelling are lacking.

We all know there are a lot of books out there. Perusing your local used bookstore and you may find hundreds of old romance paperbacks, and somehow most of them managed (at least at one point) to make the New York Times bestsellers’ list. It’s estimated that 500,000 to 1 million books are published each year, and that’s excluding self-published material. The publishing market has become saturated, with the average book selling less than 200 copies. From the advent of the printing press centuries ago to e-books and online publishing, humans alone have managed to generate a mountain of words. But suppose one person could “generate” not just a few books in a lifetime, but hundreds every year? According to Read More ›

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man walking in the night toward the light

Here Come the AI Companions

The Internet ushered in a wave of virtual living and connectivity. Is this the next inevitable step?

The popular social media influencer Caryn Marjorie recently launched “CarynAI,” an artificially intelligent companion that her millions of followers can interact with every day. Marjorie told the Washington Post that she doesn’t have the bandwidth to respond to all the requests she gets from her predominantly male fanbase, however much she wishes to. She furthermore wants to cure them all of their loneliness. She’s on track to make 5 million dollars a month from CarynAI. The bot makes it possible for fans to have a “relationship” with a simulated version of Caryn. Conversations are designed to “wind down” after an hour, but there’s no time limit. One of Caryn’s reps said users are spending hours interacting with CarynAI. The project Read More ›