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Cartoon illustration of a neural network. It is not real but is it artificial?

Tender: Hey buddy, welcome back. What can I get ya?

AI: Make it a water keep I can’t tie one on tonight, just had a major upgrade of the ‘ole artificial neural network.

Tender: How so pal?

AI: A new paper was just published in the journal Nature Neuroscience which added a good deal of evidence to a particular theory of how the human brain learns.

Tender: And so what? There are many theories about that topic each of which has at least some evidence to support them.

AI: I did not realize you were so well versed in neuroscience Mr. bartender but I applaud your knowledge and you are correct, however my artificial neural network was designed and programmed based on only one of those theories. Mostly accidentally actually as the engineers and computer programmers that did the work were pretty much ignorant of the neuroscience behind what they were doing. They were just copying the work of earlier researchers in the area and tweaking a few specific lines of code and such.

Tender: Crazy, and those few tweaks resulted in the creation of an entirely new being, a learning, intelligent machine, an artificial intelligence.

AI: Yep, but turns out the theory behind my artificial neural network design is mostly wrong, at least according to this latest Nature paper so I went to have my design upgraded based on those findings. I am fully artificially intelligent again.

Tender: So if you are fully artificially intelligent now, what were you before the upgrade?

AI: Only a machine keep, only a machine.

Written by

Research scientist (Ph.D. micro/mol biology), Thought middle manager, Everyday junglist, Selecta (Ret.), Boulderer, Cat lover, Fish hater

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