Mainstream AI and all existing AI is called narrow artificial intelligence. Take 3 minutes and get the skinny on it.
Artificial intelligence is understood to mean machines that mimic human behavior and intelligence. But actually there are 3 different types of AI: narrow AI, general AI, and super AI.
What we recognize as AI in the everyday world such as Google ranking pages, Amazon knowing what we like, and voice assistants such as Alexa, is considered narrow artificial intelligence or weak AI. It’s considered narrow because the ability to mimic human behavior works within a very limited narrow context and it can’t take on tasks beyond it’s field.
Other examples of narrow AI are Google translation where a book written in Mandarin Chinese can be translated to English in 30 seconds or self-driving cars which are a combination of several different narrow AIs. So you can see narrow intelligence is not low intelligence and because it can do many jobs faster with less mistakes, narrow AI is threatening to displace many human jobs. But even as narrow AI displaces humans from the routine jobs, it’s still not considered human level artificial intelligence.
Narrow artificial intelligence is where we are, general artificial intelligence is where we are going.
General artificial intelligence or strong AI refers to machines that can perform any generalized task which is asked of it, much like a human. This is the sort of AI seen in movies like “Her” and other science fiction movies where machine and operating systems are conscious and driven by emotion and self- awareness.
General AI would be expected to be able to reason, solve problems, understand uncertainty, integrate prior knowledge in decision-making, all at faster processing speeds than humans as well as be innovative, imaginative, and creative and experience consciousness. Most experts believe general AI is possible but since one of the world’s fastest supercomputers took 40 minutes to simulate a single second of brain neural activity and since we have 100 billion neurons in the human brain, I wouldn’t hold my breath.
Artificial super intelligence or super AI is when AI surpasses human intelligence in all aspects from creativity, to problem solving, to general wisdom. Super AI is something futurists speculate about and which we will discuss in a future Short and Sweet AI segment. Until next time, I’m Dr. Peper.