Larson explains what he hopes to convey to the reader about the limitations of Really Big Computers:
… even those hybrid systems inherit all the limitations of deduction and all the known limitations of induction, and we know we can… We very straightforwardly know that they can’t reach human general intelligence. We have something that’s called abduction, which is kind of an unfortunate word because it brings up like abducting… It brings this… It has this other connotation…
But abduction or reproduction is kind of reasoning from observation to likely hypotheses, and it does not a plausible explanations of what we see and turns out that as we go through our life, most of our life are abductions. Most of our inferences that we make just walking down the street, going to the supermarket, making sense of a conversation with your neighbor, those are all actually not inductive or deductive, but abductive inferences. So given that we need this to be general and flexible in our own human intelligence, and computers absolutely can’t reproduce that type of inference that they have to make use of induction and deduction, make these hybrid systems, and we know that these are actually the one that cannot be subsumed into the other. There’s a lodge… There are theorems that actually prove that you can’t reduce the one to the other. Well, we know that we don’t have AGI by any foreseeable extension of Google or of these companies that are saying that they’re on the brink of… We know that they’re not.Jed Macosko, “What the Future Holds for Artificial Intelligence” at Academic Influence
Abduction is sometimes called “inference to the best explanation.” Computers can’t do it because there is nothing to compute.
One fictional character who did a lot of it is Sherlock Holmes: “It is generally believed that Sherlock Holmes uses the deduction to draw his right conclusions; However, rarely does Holmes deduce. In most cases, he abduces, that is, he infers the best possible explanation for the premises he obtains from his observation.” (Life Persona)
See also: A type of reasoning AI can’t replace Abductive reasoning requires creativity, in addition to computation. AI, says William Littlefield, would get stuck in an endless loop with abductive reasoning, which is an inference to the best explanation or an educated guess. But it plays an important role in creating hypotheses in the sciences.