e-book: The Age of Intelligent Machines

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The Age of Intelligent Machines

September 8, 2009

9780262610797-f30

Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
The MIT Press (1992)

Amazon | In a work the Association of American Publishers named the Most Outstanding Computer Science Book of 1990, Kurzweil and 23 other contributors explore the history and potential of artificial intelligence. What is artificial intelligence? At its essence, it is another way of answering a central question that has been debated by scientists, philosophers, and theologians for thousands of years: How does the human brain — three… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | The Film

October 30, 2001
AIM
Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
(1987)

This award-winning 1987 documentary is the basis for the book The Age of Intelligent Machines, and features several experts from computing and artificial intelligence. From the original video notes:

“A survey of Artificial Intelligence showing AI at work and under development. The paradoxes, promise and challenges of advanced computer science, with authorities Marvin Minsky, Roger Schank, Raj Reddy and other leaders in the field.

Machines that talk and listens.… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | Prologue: The Second Industrial Revolution

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
The MIT Press (1992)

On May 26, 1733, John Kay, a twenty-nine-year-old inventor, received the news that the English Patent Office had awarded him a patent for his New Engine for Opening and Dressing Wool, now known as the flying shuttle.1 To Kay this was good news, for he hoped to start a small business supplying his new machine to the burgeoning English textile industry. What neither Kay nor his contemporaries realized at the time was that his innovation in the weaving of cloth represented the launching of the Industrial Revolution.… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | Chapter 1: The Roots of Artificial Intelligence

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
The MIT Press (1992)

The postindustrial society will be fueled not by oil but by a new commodity called artificial intelligence (AI). We might regard it as a commodity because it has value and can be traded. Indeed, as will be made clear, the knowledge imbedded in AI software and hardware architectures will become even more salient as a foundation of wealth than the raw materials that fueled the first Industrial Revolution. It is an unusual commodity, because it has no material form. It can be a flow of information with no more physical reality than electrical vibrations in a wire.… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | Chapter 2: Philosophical Roots

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
The MIT Press (1992)

“Some philosophers hold that philosophy is what you do to a problem until it’s clear enough to solve it by doing science. Others hold that if a philosophical problem succumbs to empirical methods, that shows it wasn’t really philosophical to begin with.” —  Jerry A. Fodor, Representations: Philosophical Essays on the Foundations of Cognitive Science

“The chance of the quantum theoretician is not the ethical freedom of the Augustinian.” — Norbert Wiener, Cybernetics

“There’s something queer about describing consciousness: whatever people mean to say, they just can’t seem to make it clear. It’s not like feeling confused or ignorant. Instead, we feel we know what’s going on but can’t describe it properly. How could anything seem so close, yet always keep beyond our reach?” — Marvin Minsky, The Society of Mindread more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | A Platonic Dialog on the Nature of Human Thought

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil

Asmenides: Greetings, Kurzus. I have ventured far to meet you and to hear of your ideas on philosophical systems. You have a distinguished reputation among my people but have unfortunately created many enemies with your ideas. I have even heard some rumors of your disbelief in the existence of any supreme being or God.

Kurzus: My son, I am afraid that I have been misinterpreted. Let me first define what I mean by a philosophical system. Consider the following example of such a system. Is it not possible that the only thing that actually exists is your mind and everything that you perceive and think is merely fantasy, like a continuous dream?… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | The Age of Intelligent People

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
The MIT Press (1992)

Margaret Litvin was born in Russia in 1974. She and her family have lived in the United States since 1979. She wrote this article while attending the seventh grade in Bedford, Massachusetts.

I am supposed to live in the age of intelligent machines. Frankly, I’d rather be living in the age of intelligent people! What can one say of an era when a computer is smarter than the scientists who use it?

The most important subject taught to school children is rapidly becoming computer science and applications: how to use machines instead of brains, programs instead of knowledge. Soon there will be crib computers for newborns-little brightly colored affairs that record Junior’s progress while entertaining him or her-and a more complex model that understands and translates baby talk, sings lullabies, and, later on, teaches reading, writing, and, of course, typing.… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | A Conversation Between a Human Computer and a Materialist Philosopher

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
The MIT Press (1992)

Blaine Mathieu is the founder and President of Turning Point Software in Canada, a computer firm interested in many aspects of the small computer industry.

There are few questions more mysterious and thought provoking than whether a nonhuman machine could ever be considered truly human in any important sense of the word. Let us jump ahead a few decades and imagine, for a moment, that all the problems of creating a truly intelligent machine have been solved. How would two “people,” a philosopher and a computer, handle some of the physical, emotional, and moral issues of such a creation?… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | ELIZA Passes the Turing Test

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil
Publisher:
The MIT Press (1992)

The following anecdote was told by Prof. S. Papert of MIT. Since the story has been transmitted several times indirectly, I’m not sure all the details are accurate; however, it’s a good enough story that it probably deserves repetition even if there is not a word of truth in it!

Seymour Papert is Professor of Media Technology and Director of the Learning and Epistemology Group in the Media Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is codirector, with Marvin Minsky, of MIT’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. His seminal work in the field of computers and education led to the development of the programming language LOGO. He is the author of Mindstorms: Children, Computers, and Powerful Ideas (1980) and Perceptrons, coauthored with Marvin Minsky (1969). This article is reprinted from the June 1968 Association for Computing Machinery SIGART (Special Interest Group on Artificial Intelligence) Newsletter.… read more

THE AGE OF INTELLIGENT MACHINES | A Coffeehouse Conversation on the Turing Test

September 24, 2001
Author:
Ray Kurzweil

From Ray Kurzweil’s revolutionary book The Age of Intelligent Machines, published in 1990.… read more

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