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After Thought: The Computer Challenge To Human Intelligence

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Through the first fifty years of the computer revolution, scientists have been trying to program electronic circuits to process information the same way humans do. Doing so has reassured us all that underlying every new computer capability, no matter how miraculously fast or complex, are human thought processes and logic. But cutting-edge computer scientists are coming to Through the first fifty years of the computer revolution, scientists have been trying to program electronic circuits to process information the same way humans do. Doing so has reassured us all that underlying every new computer capability, no matter how miraculously fast or complex, are human thought processes and logic. But cutting-edge computer scientists are coming to see that electronic circuits really are alien, that the difference between the human mind and computer capability is not merely one of degree (how fast), but of kind(how). The author suggests that computers “think” best when their “thoughts” are allowed to emerge from the interplay of millions of tiny operations all interacting with each other in parallel. Why then, if computers bring to the table such very different strengths and weaknesses, are we still trying to program them to think like humans? A work that ranges widely over the history of ideas from Galileo to Newton to Darwin yet is just as comfortable in the cutting-edge world of parallel processing that is at this very moment yielding a new form of intelligence, After Thought describes why the real computer age is just beginning.


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Through the first fifty years of the computer revolution, scientists have been trying to program electronic circuits to process information the same way humans do. Doing so has reassured us all that underlying every new computer capability, no matter how miraculously fast or complex, are human thought processes and logic. But cutting-edge computer scientists are coming to Through the first fifty years of the computer revolution, scientists have been trying to program electronic circuits to process information the same way humans do. Doing so has reassured us all that underlying every new computer capability, no matter how miraculously fast or complex, are human thought processes and logic. But cutting-edge computer scientists are coming to see that electronic circuits really are alien, that the difference between the human mind and computer capability is not merely one of degree (how fast), but of kind(how). The author suggests that computers “think” best when their “thoughts” are allowed to emerge from the interplay of millions of tiny operations all interacting with each other in parallel. Why then, if computers bring to the table such very different strengths and weaknesses, are we still trying to program them to think like humans? A work that ranges widely over the history of ideas from Galileo to Newton to Darwin yet is just as comfortable in the cutting-edge world of parallel processing that is at this very moment yielding a new form of intelligence, After Thought describes why the real computer age is just beginning.

43 review for After Thought: The Computer Challenge To Human Intelligence

  1. 4 out of 5

    Douglas Summers-Stay

    The author helped build the Connection Machine (a classic parallel computer from the 80s). His thesis is that data heavy representations without an explicit model and cellular-automata-like systems will become as important for future understanding of the world as equations have been, and before them, geometric diagrams.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ralph

    Describes the how the various types of math used reflect the nature of the problems they are trying to solve. As a result, the way we think about the world is influenced by the type of math we use.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Greg

    I really enjoyed the conceptual framing of Place, Pace and Pattern in discussing the history of math and science. I found the first two sections the most enlightening. For example, the prominence of diagrams in geometry given its use of shapes being replaced by the line-based equations of algebra that came to dominate after the proliferation of the printing press.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Heskarioth

    Interesting book that describes the evolution of math.

  5. 5 out of 5

    James K.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I highly recommend it to all who are interested in the development of artificial intelligence and the possibility that we will soon see machines develop self awareness.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Paul Spencer

    Quite revolutionary for its time.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Cristian Morales

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

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    Ian Harrison

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    Hunter

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    Jordan Dodson

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    Evan

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    Ed

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    Christopher Daniel

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    Ron

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    Jeffre

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    Travis Gorlin

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    Tadhg

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    mm

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    Mike Leuzinger

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    Mitch

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    Peter Curtiss

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    John

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    Jason

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    James Beldock

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    Bob Zambon

  27. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

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    Andrew Begel

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    Frank

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    Jonathan

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    Udi h Bauman

  32. 5 out of 5

    Steven

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    ipso

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    Elie Salem

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    James

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    Jason

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    Gustavo D

  38. 5 out of 5

    Barry

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    Amanda

  40. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

  41. 4 out of 5

    Graham

  42. 5 out of 5

    Pau Sola

  43. 5 out of 5

    Heath Alberts

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