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I, algorithm: A new dawn for artificial intelligence

作者:贲穰菱    发布时间:2017-06-11 03:00:12    

By Anil Ananthaswamy Artificial intelligence has finally become trustworthy enough to watch over everything from nuclear bombs to premature babies GIVEN the choice between a flesh-and-blood doctor and an artificial intelligence system for diagnosing diseases, Pedro Domingos is willing to stake his life on AI. “I’d trust the machine more than I’d trust the doctor,” says Domingos, a computer scientist at the University of Washington, Seattle. Considering the bad rap AI usually receives – overhyped, underwhelming – such strong statements in its support are rare indeed. Back in the 1960s, AI systems started to show great promise for replicating key aspects of the human mind. Scientists began by using mathematical logic to both represent knowledge about the real world and to reason about it, but it soon turned out to be an AI straightjacket. While logic was capable of being productive in ways similar to the human mind, it was inherently unsuited for dealing with uncertainty. Yet after spending so long shrouded in a self-inflicted winter of discontent, the much-maligned field of AI is in bloom again. And Domingos is not the only one with fresh confidence in it. Researchers hoping to detect illness in babies, translate spoken words into text and even sniff out rogue nuclear explosions are proving that sophisticated computer systems can exhibit the nascent abilities which sparked interest in AI in the first place: the ability to reason like humans, even in a noisy and chaotic world. Lying close to the heart of AI’s revival is a technique called probabilistic programming,

 

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