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Artificial vs human intelligence: Sabine Hossenfelder offers us 10 differences

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Lost in Math

Theoretical physicist Hossenfelder, the author of Lost in Math: How Beauty Leads Physics Astray, includes

10. Precision

The human brain is much more noisy and less precise than a neural net running on a computer. This means the brain basically cannot run the same learning mechanism as a neural net and it’s probably using an entirely different mechanism.

A consequence of these differences is that artificial intelligence today needs a lot of training with a lot of carefully prepared data, which is very unlike to how human intelligence works. Neural nets do not build models of the world, instead they learn to classify patterns, and this pattern recognition can fail with only small changes. A famous example is that you can add small amounts of noise to an image, so small amounts that your eyes will not see a difference, but an artificially intelligent system might be fooled into thinking a turtle is a rifle.

Sabine Hossenfelder, “10 differences between artificial intelligence and human intelligence” at BackRe(Action)

As AI types like to say, the system is so easily fooled because it doesn’t “know” anything. We are slowly learning, in consequence, more about what it means for a human being to “know” something.

See what deep learning vision made of a teapot (golf ball?) How about the school bus as a punching bag?

See also: Sabine Hossenfelder dusts off superdeterminism.

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One Reply to “Artificial vs human intelligence: Sabine Hossenfelder offers us 10 differences

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    as to this claim in particular,

    The human brain is much more noisy and less precise than a neural net running on a computer.

    I don’t know where she got that, she referenced none of her claims in her article, but it is wrong. She probably got it from the materialistic presuppositions of Darwinian evolution. Yet despite what she falsely believes to be true, there is now found to be far less noise, i.e. ‘random thermodynamic jostling’, in biological systems than was originally presupposed in Darwinian materialism. The first part of the following video touches upon that fact:

    Darwinian Materialism vs. Quantum Biology – Part II – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSig2CsjKbg

    For instance, the following article on human vision stated that, “Research,, has shown that humans can detect the presence of a single photon, the smallest measurable unit of light”.,,, “it is remarkable: a photon, the smallest physical entity with quantum properties of which light consists, is interacting with a biological system consisting of billions of cells, all in a warm and wet environment,”,, and the researched added, “The response that the photon generates survives all the way to the level of our awareness despite the ubiquitous background noise. Any man-made detector would need to be cooled and isolated from noise to behave the same way.”,,, “What we want to know next is how does a biological system achieve such sensitivity? How does it achieve this in the presence of noise?”

    Study suggests humans can detect even the smallest units of light – July 21, 2016
    Excerpt: Research,, has shown that humans can detect the presence of a single photon, the smallest measurable unit of light. Previous studies had established that human subjects acclimated to the dark were capable only of reporting flashes of five to seven photons.,,,
    it is remarkable: a photon, the smallest physical entity with quantum properties of which light consists, is interacting with a biological system consisting of billions of cells, all in a warm and wet environment,” says Vaziri. “The response that the photon generates survives all the way to the level of our awareness despite the ubiquitous background noise. Any man-made detector would need to be cooled and isolated from noise to behave the same way.”,,,
    The gathered data from more than 30,000 trials demonstrated that humans can indeed detect a single photon incident on their eye with a probability significantly above chance.
    “What we want to know next is how does a biological system achieve such sensitivity? How does it achieve this in the presence of noise?”
    http://phys.org/news/2016-07-humans-smallest.html

    In point 9 Hossenfelder claimed that

    9.,,,, “The human brain, on the other hand, has a lot of structure already wired into its connectivity, and it draws on models which have proved useful during evolution.”

    Yet, of all the things that defy the simplistic, evidence free, explanations of Darwinian evolution, the human brain is certainly first and foremost to defy simplistic Darwininian explanations:

    The Human Brain Is ‘Beyond Belief’ by Jeffrey P. Tomkins, Ph.D. * – 2017
    Excerpt: The human brain,, is an engineering marvel that evokes comments from researchers like “beyond anything they’d imagined, almost to the point of being beyond belief”1 and “a world we had never imagined.”2,,,
    Perfect Optimization
    The scientists found that at multiple hierarchical levels in the whole brain, nerve cell clusters (ganglion), and even at the individual cell level, the positioning of neural units achieved a goal that human engineers strive for but find difficult to achieve—the perfect minimizing of connection costs among all the system’s components.,,,
    Vast Computational Power
    Researchers discovered that a single synapse is like a computer’s microprocessor containing both memory-storage and information-processing features.,,, Just one synapse alone can contain about 1,000 molecular-scale microprocessor units acting in a quantum computing environment. An average healthy human brain contains some 200 billion nerve cells connected to one another through hundreds of trillions of synapses. To put this in perspective, one of the researchers revealed that the study’s results showed a single human brain has more information processing units than all the computers, routers, and Internet connections on Earth.1,,,
    Phenomenal Processing Speed
    the processing speed of the brain had been greatly underrated. In a new research study, scientists found the brain is 10 times more active than previously believed.6,7,,,
    The large number of dendritic spikes also means the brain has more than 100 times the computational capabilities than was previously believed.,,,
    Petabyte-Level Memory Capacity
    Our new measurements of the brain’s memory capacity increase conservative estimates by a factor of 10 to at least a petabyte, in the same ballpark as the World Wide Web.9,,,
    Optimal Energy Efficiency
    Stanford scientist who is helping develop computer brains for robots calculated that a computer processor functioning with the computational capacity of the human brain would require at least 10 megawatts to operate properly. This is comparable to the output of a small hydroelectric power plant. As amazing as it may seem, the human brain requires only about 10 watts to function.11 ,,,
    Multidimensional Processing
    It is as if the brain reacts to a stimulus by building then razing a tower of multi-dimensional blocks, starting with rods (1D), then planks (2D), then cubes (3D), and then more complex geometries with 4D, 5D, etc. The progression of activity through the brain resembles a multi-dimensional sandcastle that materializes out of the sand and then disintegrates.13
    He also said:
    We found a world that we had never imagined. There are tens of millions of these objects even in a small speck of the brain, up through seven dimensions. In some networks, we even found structures with up to eleven dimensions.13,,,
    Biophoton Brain Communication
    Neurons contain many light-sensitive molecules such as porphyrin rings, flavinic, pyridinic rings, lipid chromophores, and aromatic amino acids. Even the mitochondria machines that produce energy inside cells contain several different light-responsive molecules called chromophores. This research suggests that light channeled by filamentous cellular structures called microtubules plays an important role in helping to coordinate activities in different regions of the brain.,,,
    https://www.icr.org/article/10186

    Sabine Hossenfelder is a theoretical physicist. I certainly expect more rigor from a physicist in the claims that they may make than the sloppiness that Hossenfelder displayed in that article. She can, and should, do better.

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