Re: Guessing?

From: Marshall <>
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2008 13:42:10 -0700 (PDT)
Message-ID: <>

On Jul 14, 10:30 am, JOG <> wrote:

> On Jul 14, 5:45 pm, Marshall <> wrote:
> > On Jul 13, 9:07 am, JOG <> wrote:
> > > >> The greatest weakness in the entire debate, however,
> > > >> is the capacity issue. Lack of computing capacity is
> > > >> a complete explanation for what computers can't do (yet.)
> > > <splutter/>
> > > Ok, this one is just ridiculous. Lets take the bastion of good old
> > > fashioned AI - chess. In the 90's the chess AI "deep blue" was
> > > processing over 200 million board positions a second. That's right.
> > > 200 millions every single second. Let's compare that to a grand
> > > master, who can examine about 8. Yup, that's 199,999,992 less
> > > positions per second than the AI.
> > Hey! You've been complaining about the other side's simplistic
> > analyses, but here you're doing exactly the same thing. Deep
> > Blue included special purpose hardware for playing chess, as
> > well as dozens of general purpose CPUs. And you're claiming
> > it's looking at 25 million times as many positions per second.
> > Yet, Deep Blue lost to Kasparov, and Deeper Blue only just
> > managed to eke out a victory. So, the 25 million number is
> > crap, isn't it?
> C'monnnn, its incredible. Examining 8 positions per second vs 200
> million.

You did not address my point *at all.* Kasparov and Deep Blue are roughly at parity in terms of winning. You are making exactly the mistake that you complain about in the field: invalid comparisons.

We see over and over again that special-purpose hardware provides enormous benefits in computational power. A factorization engine with custom built hardware can out-factor a general purpose computer running factoring software by an enormous margin. If you know exactly the problem domain ahead of time and can craft a solution directly to it, that gives a lot of leverage. Kasparov is not special-purpose hardware, and yet he still was at parity in the problem domain. Therefore he *obviously* is using higher-capacity hardware.

> Waving our hands about and saying "if only we just had more
> processors" or "if only we could just add /another/ hundred thousand
> rules", is just wishful thinking (bordering on religious faith). The
> problem is not capacity, it is approach.

Approach may well be a problem; there are so many different approaches being taken that it is unclear to me. However capacity is certainly a problem, regardless of approach. And stop using the inflammatory word "religious" thank you very much.

> I agree that there is no
> reason to think AI is not achievable,

Then we're done.

Marshall Received on Mon Jul 14 2008 - 22:42:10 CEST

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