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36 votes

Why is it impossible for a program or AI to have semantic understanding?

There is a blatant problem with Searle’s argument and it’s quite hard to understand why it hasn’t been pointed out before: None of Mr. Searle’s brain cells understands English, yet he claims that he ...
gnasher729's user avatar
  • 5,620
28 votes

I prompt an AI into generating something; who created it: me, the AI, or the AI's author?

Stories of creation, like stories of attribution, are social constructs. Causation involves many interacting parts, going out and back as far as one can imagine. When we talk about somebody having ...
Michael's user avatar
  • 1,281
26 votes

Why are humans and AI often treated differently in cases where they perform nearly identical processes?

The training sets for generative AI systems are orders of magnitude larger than the number of images or words that a human being sees in a lifetime. If you trained a neural net on only the images that ...
benrg's user avatar
  • 1,205
22 votes
Accepted

Why is it impossible for a program or AI to have semantic understanding?

I find it odd that his main argument for why programs could not think was that because programs could only follow syntax rules but could not associate any understanding or semantics to words( or any ...
Hypnosifl's user avatar
  • 2,857
22 votes

Does the success of AI (Large Language Models) support Wittgenstein's position that "meaning is use"?

No. Wittgenstein would probably be the first to argue that the bare existence of a functioning Large Language Model does not by itself have any philosophical importance. The construction of an LLM is ...
transitionsynthesis's user avatar
18 votes

Why do some physicalists use the Turing Machine as a model of the brain?

A little background: there's a funny fact about computers that a very crude system with a primitive programming language can solve every computable problem (given enough memory). As we write better ...
Owen Reynolds's user avatar
17 votes

Why are humans and AI often treated differently in cases where they perform nearly identical processes?

Neural networks are not modelled on the way the brain works because no one knows how the brain works. At best a neural network is an extremely limited and highly idealized simulation of a model based ...
David Gudeman's user avatar
17 votes
Accepted

Does the use of AI make someone more intelligent?

This depends on your definition of Intelligence There are two competing (categories of) ways to define intelligence, Internalism and Externalism. Neither of these are "more correct" than the ...
Tim C's user avatar
  • 521
16 votes

How can one refute John Searle's "syntax is not semantics" argument against strong AI?

Wittgenstein in his intermediate period provided a response, before the age of AI research and Searle's objections. In a nutshell: semantics is another syntax. Words only mean as role players in a ...
Conifold's user avatar
  • 43.4k
15 votes

The Turing-Asimov Dilemma

The problem with this argument is that the three laws are a plot device and not laws at all. Not only has no robot been programmed with them, no robot could be. You can lay down a general rule that ...
Mary's user avatar
  • 1,988
15 votes

When does simulating something produce a real effect of that thing?

I was just listening to an interview with David Chalmers where he opined that if one could accurately simulate the brain, consciousness would arise in the simulation. Are there any other instances ...
Tanner Swett's user avatar
15 votes

Does or could ChatGPT understand text?

The argument is irrelevant. You can apply the same logic to say that humans don't understand text, since text doesn't exist in your brain. There are lots of software applications that read text- if ...
Marco Ocram's user avatar
13 votes

I prompt an AI into generating something; who created it: me, the AI, or the AI's author?

This is a conundrum applicable to any attribution of responsibility, not just AI. While I personally would attribute the plurality of responsibility of creation (of the resulting image, say, or text) ...
Stephen Voris's user avatar
12 votes

Does or could ChatGPT understand text?

ChatGPT never gets the text questions online users type. All it gets is electrons. […] The ubiquitous claim that ChatGPT is trained on text stored on the internet is simply bonkers. This argument is ...
Tanner Swett's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

The Turing-Asimov Dilemma

The intersection of AI research and deontic logic is nonempty. One preliminary example of the framework for such an intersection is Wieringa and Meyer's "Applications of Deontic Logic in Computer ...
Kristian Berry's user avatar
11 votes

The Turing-Asimov Dilemma

There is no dilemma. Turing Test requires the subject to sit in another room. The subject is not available for observation, only his/her/it's answers are. That limitation do not exist for Asimov's ...
Atif's user avatar
  • 1,074
11 votes

Do ChatGPT and other AI bots force a rethinking of anonymity?

Yes, but not in the way your question implies it. Automized language models will provide a huge challenge for anonymity, but likely not because we can't tell them apart, but rather because they are ...
haxor789's user avatar
  • 6,162
11 votes

Why are humans and AI often treated differently in cases where they perform nearly identical processes?

The premise is flawed because humans and AIs do not use the same processes, at least currently. As Davie Gudeman's answer already points out, humans and AIs at least at present do not use the same ...
TimothyAWiseman's user avatar
11 votes

Could general-AI language generation be a test for sentience, sapience, or consciousness?

If several independent general AI were to, unprompted, develop their own language ab initio (or perhaps from other languages,) could this serve as a test for sentience, sapience, or general ...
J D's user avatar
  • 27.7k
11 votes
Accepted

Will the use of AI reduce our capacity to think?

It depends on what you mean by "to think", but from the extended mind thesis it actually increases our ability to critically think. I no longer know most of the phone numbers of my friends ...
J D's user avatar
  • 27.7k
10 votes

Why is it impossible for a program or AI to have semantic understanding?

As I see it, Searle is getting at the point that syntax is algorithmic — a system driven by predefined rules and procedures — but semantics is (as far as we can tell) not. In other words, it's easy ...
Ted Wrigley's user avatar
  • 20.2k
10 votes

The Turing-Asimov Dilemma

Your reasoning is faulty. There is no dilemma. First and foremost, because your understanding of Asimov's laws is flawed. These are the imperatives which govern robot behavior in Asimov's fiction. ...
fectin's user avatar
  • 239
10 votes
Accepted

Does the success of AI (Large Language Models) support Wittgenstein's position that "meaning is use"?

Yes, indeed: According to the post-Tractatus Wittgenstein, words are "meaning families"; the specific "meaning" of a word is determined by (or perhaps is) its use in context. ...
Peter - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

Is the simulation of emotional states equivalent to actually experiencing emotions?

Different schools of thought within the philosophy of mind would answer your question differently. I will try to describe the answer that each position implies, based on the information from the two ...
Alexander S King's user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

Will computers ever have consciousness?

Will computers ever have consciousness? Depends on who you ask. 3 possible responses: Consciousness and the mind are non physical phenomena, and computers are physical systems so, no, computers can'...
Alexander S King's user avatar
9 votes

Why is it impossible for a program or AI to have semantic understanding?

Short Answer There's a number of positions outlined in your SEP link to Searle's Room that make clear that philosophy has not decided by consensus one way or another the question of human and semantic ...
J D's user avatar
  • 27.7k
9 votes

Why do some physicalists use the Turing Machine as a model of the brain?

The Church-Turing thesis suggests that any machine we can build is no more powerful than a Turing machine. It is possible to run an approximate numerical simulation of physics, on a computer. A ...
causative's user avatar
  • 13.6k
8 votes

Why doesn't the Chinese room learn Chinese?

Even if the man inside the Chinese room memorised every single translation instance (theoretically every possible combination which is impossible given our limited memory, but it's a thought ...
jphillips's user avatar
  • 144
8 votes

I prompt an AI into generating something; who created it: me, the AI, or the AI's author?

Nobody. You discovered it. If a pseudo-random number generator outputs a string of 50 characters, and you discover that entering -1 as the seed outputs a pun, did you write the pun? No. Did the ...
jmoreno's user avatar
  • 697

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