@ ABHISHEK | Thursday, Mar 25, 2021 | 4 minutes read | Update at Thursday, Mar 25, 2021

Today, the field of Artificial Intelligence is moving at such a staggering pace, that AI has become the centre of attention of today’s technological world! AI has become the most popular buzzword these days. This field has become so much popular that even the people who are not directly related to this field have some strong opinions about the future of this field. But, buzzwords are used in a way which focuses on impressing people and the real meaning is altered for own benefit. So the word AI is used in many ways it is desired. This is not correct as the real essence of what the buzzword is expressing is never understood. Therefore, we must first understand completely what AI is, and then form opinions about its future and its potential. The most important step in understanding AI, is its aim. Knowing the aim of this discipline and why such discipline came into existence in first place, is really important to understand what AI is.


The aim of Artificial intelligence is to understand intelligent entities. Then to satisfy this aim, we must first understand what is intelligence and what makes an agent an intelligent agent? The answer to all these questions can be found by studying intelligent agents and the best example of an intelligent agent can be found by just standing in front of a mirror! Yes! Humans are the best examples of intelligent entities. Thus, in the 1900s, researchers began exploring the thought process, the reasoning process of humans as human beings were considered as an ideal intelligent agent. Mimicking human behaviour became the aim of AI in the initial years of the research. After setting this goal, studies and experiments began and the most famous experiment conducted in the initial years to achieve this aim was the Turing Test! Turing defined intelligent behaviour as the ability to achieve human-level performance in all cognitive tasks, sufficient to fool an interrogator. But this test received criticism as only mimicking human behaviour is not exactly intelligence. Because, intelligence should be related to the working of the human brain as without the human brain, intelligence has no meaning! Thus, mimicking human thought process and reasoning became the transformed aim. The field of Psychology and philosophy also resonate with this aim that is to understand human thought process. The difference is that AI not only tries to understand thought process but to mimic it, build it. The collaboration of these fields resulted in models such as Neural Networks which tries to mimic the function of neurons present in the human brain. So, basically this initial aim was human-centred and humans were considered as the ideal intelligent agent. Concurrently, the field of computer science was developing at a greater pace. With the advances in computer science, the experiments and theories could be easily tested and validated. As programs were being applied to solve real life problems, it was found that computers performed better than humans at some tasks that are really complex for humans. One of the best examples of this could be the chess playing program. An AI program defeated the world’s best chess player Garry Kasparov. This incident indicated that human intelligence is not the ultimate intelligence or else a human would have been able to defeat the AI program. This leads to a question,

Is human intelligence the ideal intelligence?

As computers became more advanced, they proved to be better than humans at certain complex tasks. That is why the new definition of intelligence was being related to the ability to solve cognitive tasks or problems. So, rather than considering nature of agents, researchers began to study the nature of intelligence itself. Then the question comes how to test or validate intelligence? The best way to test intelligence is solving cognitive problems. An agent can be said intelligent only if it can solve a complex problem. The problem-solving approach can be easily tested and validated on computers. Thus, some researchers began studying the ideal intelligence and the selected agent to validate the experiments was computer. So, a computer and problem-solving approach was adopted.So, the human-centred approach and computer, problem-solving approach are the two main approaches ofAI. Both of these fields have contributed to the field by giving valuable insights. Both the approaches are important and both of these collaboratively form the main aim of AI. So, the aim of AI is comprised of many aims, which is essentially to understand intelligent entities and to build them and all the other fields which resonate with this aim, are all contributing in one way or other to help AI to achieve this aim. Now, you will say that Psychology and Philosophy had this goal from many years, then how AI is different ?? It is true that the aim of AI resonates with that of psychology and philosophy, i.e. to understand intelligent entities. But, the aim of AI is not only to understand intelligent entities, but to build them!

Social Links