Archaeology of AI [From Reactive Machines to Self-Aware AI]

in Project HOPE2 years ago

Artificial Intelligence or AI as it is generally called has gained massive advancements lately. From the time the term AI was first used by John McCarthy in the year 1955, it has been gain more grounds. Here, we'll take a brief rundown on the evolution of AI from the past and extrapolate it to the future.

[Image Source: Pixabay. CC0 licensed]

Stage 1 - Reactive Machines

This was the first concept of AI when it was introduced. You will not be wrong to refer to this as "AI in ground state". While this will pass the definition of AI, it is worthy to note that it does not form new memory and it only responds to actions based on a set of algorithms that were pre-programmed into it. Just like the name suggests, it is designed to relate with its environment, then perform actions in responds to changes in its environment but obviously cannot form new memory (that's the reason behind the name "reactive machines").

Even though AI has gone way beyond the reactive machines, this AI still forms a major breakthrough in the field of AI and has found applications in various places like the creation of "Alpha GO. Alpha GO is a chess playing app that was created by Google. Amazingly, the app was seen to defeat the best of human chess player. Now the humour in it is; the AI that was programmed to play GO did not know GO is also classified as a board game. Well, that's because it cannot form new memory asides what was pre-programmed into it.

[Image of Alpha GO playing against Sedol. Image from Flickr. Author: Buster Benson. CC BY-SA 2.0 Licensed]

Stage 2 - Limited Memory AI

This stage represents an improvement from the earlier stage of AI. Here, AIs were incorporated with a database and memory capacity to be able to relate to past actions and interact with the database to respond to a present action in a different manner. I mean, they are not stereotyped like the reactive machines, but can create entirely new database of memory from actions and responses.

However, this AI, just like the former one, does not incorporate common sense or consciousness but it bridges the gap between the Artificial Narrow Intelligence (or what is generally referred to as Weak AI) with the Stronger AI called AGI (Artificial General Intelligence). Example of this is your autonomous self-driven vehicles and some very popular chat bots.

Stage 3 - Mind-Theory AI

This AI has gone way beyond just forming new memory databases into the act of perceiving intuitions and even thoughts. Not just perceiving thoughts but can also perceive emotions, which can be used relate to humans. Some may ask if "Sophia The Robot" belongs to this category. Well, even though Sophia is one of the most advanced humanoid robots, it is still at the borderline to Mind-Theory AI.

This type of AI is also known as Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) and or what the futurist, Ray Kurzweil, normally call Full AI). This, being an AGI, has already placed it beyond the normal AI that only functions in one capacity. That means, it has a generalized application and this is just a step away to the future we anticipate in AI.

The Future: Self-Aware AI

I read a particular science publication a few years back about the prediction by one very respected futurist and proponent of emerging technology, Ian Pearson. In his prediction, he explained that a time is coming when AI will be many times (billions of times) smarter than humans.

[Image Source: Maxpixel. CC0 Licensed]

Well, this is the kind of AI he was obviously referring to: The Self-Aware AI, the conscious machine, or ASI (Artificial Super Intelligence). At the moment, this AI exists only in theory but that being said, it does not mean it is unattainable in the future. One can easily infer that this stage is the final stage of what we expect AI to evolve to.

For some of us that love Sci-Fi movies, I'd recommend you watch "Ex Mechina" to have an idea of what Self-Aware AI may look like. The cast "Ava" is a close depiction of it. For those saying "impossible", may I also remind you that a few things we didn't think possible some years ago have now become the order of the day.

You can also read this article and this.

Thanks for reading

Peace on y'all


Resteemed already. Upvote on the way :)

Many thanks fam 😎

It is definitely possible to have self conscious AI, that is not arguable because it is extremely possible but the only question that bothers my mind if it is going to be safe for humans and humans will not be completely eradicated.

That same question bothers a lot of people too. Obviously, if AI becomes smarter than humans, then how will humans control what is beyond them? We'll just brace for impact

It is quite impressive the way Artificial intelligence has been developed steadily into what it is now from a reactive machine. It is visible that in the future, AI will be able to do more than it can currently which is being able to create other artificial intelligence by it self and knowing more than the human brain can comprehend.

Exactly buddy. I foresee a future where AI will not just be able to design other AIs but will function independent of humans.
Thanks for coming

My pleasure friend.


i find ASI hyper awesome.
I imagine what an archaeologist (Indiana Jones) could do, with a tool like this. Although he admitted that I am afraid that one of these machines decides that we should no longer exist and that we are attacked instead of helping us to progress; I think that is a fear that we are far from freeing ourselves from.

Yeah, I also find it awesome but only if humans will be able to control it. What if it decides to wage war against humans, for example, how do we hope to defeat what is many times smarter than us? 😂

Wow, it is so great to see how technology has evolved over time and how creative man has been to perfectly create something beautiful.
Kudos to those great scientist who put their brain to complete use.

Yeah. Technology keeps getting advanced. What we've seen is nothing compared to what's actually coming.
Thanks Tobi

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Thanks bro matt

Could this self aware machines also be regarded as self conscious machines?

Actually, the two terms are used interchangeably, so I'd say yes

Hi @samminator

Another great post!

I think the question @eni-ola raises is interesting because when we talk about machines become more like humans and being self-aware, we also start encroaching on other human traits like having a conscience and an imagination. There then seems to be two main camps. The scientists who say that the human brain is essentially a computer and therefore we should be able to recreate self-awareness and other human attributes. The more religious will argue that human spirit, or the soul, is the essence of the human make-up.

The ironic thing is both come without proofs and also both therefore at this stage in our understanding rely on belief. The fact is at the moment, we can theorise but we simply don't know how self-awareness actually manifests. I am sure as science proceeds we will learn more.

Actually I think the progress has been made towards incorporating self-awareness into AI. A few years back, I read about the attempt by the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence to incorporate common sense into AI. Not just that, even DARPA is making attempts to "teach" common sense to AI. The possibility is already there. Let's keep our fingers crossed and watch as things unfold.