Ray Kurzweil and others have suggested that computers will very soon exhibit Artificial General Intelligence (AGI). AGI implies that the systems will not be domain-specific (like chess-playing systems) but can adapt to a wide range of contexts. Few would dispute that these systems will solve problems which unaided humans could only solve by using their intelligence, and that the AGI systems will often be faster and more accurate. If one wants to call this ability “intelligence,” then doubtless AGI systems are intelligent. But this impressive progress does nothing to bridge the chasm between computers and the metaphysics of mind. The human mind has a number of intrinsic characteristics, such as subjectivity, intentionality, teleology, and rationality, which a computer can only simulate. If one defines “intelligence” in terms of a subject’s capacity to seek out and acquire knowledge of the real world, then I see no reason to think that the most sophisticated AGI system is a substantial advance on a pocket calculator.
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