Test Yourself

Published March 19, 2023 by Nan Mykel

What is a movie about a man who is a man who is a man?

What could the image at the top refer to?

Stephen Ornes wrote an article in Quanta magazine (Not Quora) about unsuspected abilities of the large language models (LLMs) of computational engines behind AI chatbots such as ChatGPT, and I want to refer you to that article in a minute. But first, the LLMs answered correctly on the first try at the movie question, which was Nemo. Also, it has been discovered as reported in Quanta, that the most powerful LLMs can change themselves by Emergence, a process which first referred to an evolutionary process in living things (slime molds).

The question about the image at the top is that it depicts the Trojan horse, which aided invaders to attack Troy as reported in ancient literature. The dangerousness of its presence was unknown until too late. The invaders hidden in the horse were already in the town and it was too late to avoid a catastrophic takeover.

For the interested and curious go to both Ornes’ Quanta magazine’s site and  Johnson’s Book Emergence.

What is emergence?  In his 2001 book Emergence, Steven Johnson says that “The movement from low-level rules to higher-level communication is what we call emergence.”

Johnson wonders if computers will become self-aware in the coming years by drawing upon the adaptive open-endedness of emergent software.  “Even the most optimistic champions of self-organization feel a little wary about the lack of control in such a process.”

The discovery of emergence appears to have begun with studies of slime molds, which in some conditions move as one unit but in other conditions (of food availability)  separate and function as individuals.

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