Thursday, January 11, 2024

Replacing the Turing Test with the Menard Test

 In Borges short short tale, "Paul Menard, author of the Quixote", he reports on the astonish tale of the 19th century author, who livs a life so exemplary in the literal sense that it is exemplary of what the author of the classic work, Don Quixote should be like, that when Menard produces the Quixote, it is not a copy of the work by Cervantes, but a better work, despite being word-for-word identical. But it is not a copy, it was made through the creative efforts of Menard, based on his experiences and knowldge and skills.

Imagine an AI that was trained i n the world, not on a large corpus of text, so that it didn;t just acquite a statistical model of text, but acquired an inner life, and then could use that inner life to create new works.

Imagine such an AI was able to produce, for example, a book called Don Quixote, without having read the work by Cervantes.

That AI would necessarily contain a model of Cervantes, or at least something that had many of the same elements.

This model of a creative human is quite different from a model of lots of blocks of text, which can be regurgitated with many small variations, but are, of necessity, merely stochastic parrots.

Was one to interrogate the true creative AI, it might respond with other works, that Cervantes might have written, if he were still around.

A similar AI with an inner life, that modelled, say, Schubert, might be capable of completing symphony number 8, or another, with the "eye" of Jackson Pollock, might move from abstract expressionism, to hyper-realism one day.

Such AIs might be able to introspect (e.g. in the manner of Alfred Hitchock, when interviewed by Francois Truffaut about why he used certain approaches for sense in his film).

Such systems would really be interesting, and not rote learned in how to pass trivial Turing Tests.

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misery me, there is a floccipaucinihilipilification (*) of chronsynclastic infundibuli in these parts and I must therefore refer you to frank zappa instead, and go home