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Monday, 23 May 2016

AI drama

From alphr comes a story about the literary exploits of Google's foray into artificial intelligence.

One of the reasons why the Turing Test continues to be such a steep bar for AI to clear is because artificial intelligences just don’t talk like normal people. Artificial chatter is often grammatically sound, but feels stuffy, formal and just not quite right. Getting artificial intelligences to sound human has been a tough old nut to crack.

Google has an interesting solution to this, and has posted a paper outlining how it taught its artificial intelligence a flair for the dramatic by what I can only describe as cruel and unusual punishment. Inspired, no doubt, by the seemingly endless streams of Mills and Boon style romance novels cluttering up charity shops around the country, Google fed a neural network model 12,000 ebooks, some 2,865 if which were of that much maligned genre.


Here's an example of its output.

“this was the only way. it was the only way. it was her turn to blink. it was hard to tell. it was time to move on. he had to do it again. they all looked at each other. they all turned to look back. they both turned to face him. they both turned and walked away.”

Not impressive, but what if the researchers eventually succeed and we can't tell the difference between human and machine output? I'm not sure, but take another look at the example above. With a few adjustments and a few key words it could easily be turned into an EU referendum argument because the standard is not high is it? 

4 comments:

Sam Vega said...

This issue relates to your post before last on "The Empty Brain". Google now has a considerable and increasing input into what we know, how we get to know it, and how we think. What they feed the beast on is therefore important to all of us. It used to be the case that our minds were shaped by something we knew not what. Increasingly, we will know what that thing is. But we won't be able to control it.

In the meantime, for those of us who value exactitude over hackneyed popular sentiment, they could at least have taught the bastard thing to use capitals at the start of each sentence.

Roger said...

Just suppose we put AK where the test computer sits and arranged that daft people tried to determine if AK was 'intelligent'. IMHO the Turing Test suffers a major disadvantage, there has to be intelligence on at least one end of the line. I suspect Google is discovering there is not much of it about.

Demetrius said...

In a way there are times I suspect I am a machine in that I seem to function better when well oiled.

A K Haart said...

Sam - I agree, the shaping of our minds is becoming known. It is for sale too.

Roger - Google pays very well for a slice what intelligence there is. Presumably this reflects the scarcity of it.

Demetrius - that reminds me...